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E. Becoming A Partner In Your Health Care

Narrator: This is Science Today. It's important for patients take part in managing their own health care. Pat Sparacino, a clinical nurse specialist at the University of California, San Francisco says a recent study found patients with congestive heart failure do better after taking some initiative.

Sparacino: I think it's important that a patient ask his or his physician about what symptoms they should be specifically looking for, when they ask about their diet, not just to accept a recommendation of oh, watch the salt, but ask for specific guidelines, to ask for resources.

Narrator: The federal Agency for Health Care Policy and Research has developed prevention and disease management guidelines for both the heart patients and their care givers.

Sparacino: The attempt is one of pulling away from the traditional, more paternalistic way of delivering health care of we as health care providers know what's best for you the patient and we will select what it is we think you need to know.

Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.