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J Cardiovasc Nurs. 2007 Nov-Dec;22(6):488-92.

Outpatient nursing clinic for congenital heart disease patients: Copenhagen Transition Program.

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  • 1Copenhagen University Hospital, The Heart Center, Copenhagen, Denmark.


Adolescents with congenital heart disease need support transitioning from childhood to adulthood. To become independent, adolescents need to possess knowledge about the disease and how to handle life with congenital heart disease. Outpatient nursing clinics can address issues relevant for adolescents. Creating an environment in which worries and questions can be discussed better prepares adolescents to meet the struggles of living with congenital heart disease. The Copenhagen Transition Program was established in 2004. This outpatient nursing clinic was established by (1) defining the target group, (2) conducting a literature review, (3) collaborating with interdisciplinary colleagues, (4) scheduling visits to the transition-nursing clinic, (5) arranging clinic visits, (6) charting, and (7) testing and evaluating the clinic. Adolescents with congenital heart disease are invited to a consultation with a specially trained nurse, and it is the patients themselves who decide the content of the consultation. Topics such as knowledge about the disease, endocarditis, acute situations, nutrition, contraception, alcohol/drugs, smoking, physical activity, sleep/rest, and education may be discussed. Parents are asked not to participate.

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