Objectives:

To facilitate a peer-developed health promotion magazine that provides health education and engages hospitalized pediatric patients during a hospital admission. To evaluate patient satisfaction with the content and layout of the magazine and its impact on patients’ attitudes toward healthy living.

Methods:

A pediatric resident–led multidisciplinary team collaborated with the Children’s Council at The Hospital for Sick Children to create a health promotion magazine for inpatients. Articles included a scavenger hunt, healthy recipes, physical activities, hospital staff interviews, and patient stories. Patients 7 to 18 years of age admitted to Pediatric Medicine or Respirology were invited to read the magazine and complete a questionnaire 24 hours later on their satisfaction with the magazine and their attitudes regarding healthy living.

Results:

Thirty-seven patients received a copy of the magazine, and 24 patients completed the questionnaire (mean 13.4 years, 54% female, 25% overweight/obese). Eleven of 24 (46%) read the entire magazine, and 19 of 23 (83%) reported learning. The exercises, recipes, and patient stories were most liked. Ten of 24 (42%) participants performed the exercises; the most common reason for not trying an exercise was pain. After reading the magazine, 15 of 24 (65%) patients reported that they will try to be more active, and 11 of 23 (48%) reported that they will try to eat more fruits and vegetables. Eighty-three percent were interested in a future edition.

Conclusions:

A health promotion magazine created by patients for patients changed patient-reported attitudes about healthy living. Peer-led interventions in the inpatient setting may be an important opportunity to promote healthy lifestyles and require further study.

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