caduceusIn an effort to combat problems with health literacy, and lower hospital re-admission rates, Timothy Bickmore, PhD, is testing a “virtual patient advocate…to increase patient understanding of post-discharge self-care regimens.   … The research for the virtual patient advocate is sponsored by a grant from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health.” 

While not a substitute for in-person nursing or medical counseling, the virtual advocate helps inform and remind Boston Medical Center trial patients of what they need to do to stick to their health regimen after leaving the hospital, and the virtual aide prompts the patient to write down any clarificatory questions of their nurse or Primary Care Physician.

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