Explaining the intricacies of orthopaedic medical treatment to the elderly, and its benefits, will now be easier thanks to a pioneering computer presentation created in Melbourne.
For the past 18 months, surgeons have been working with Greek language teachers and the multimedia company Surgical Multimedia Services to create computer-based Greek language patient education modules for two orthopaedic procedures: total hip replacement and total knee replacement.

Associate Professor Marinis Pirpiris, an orthopaedic surgeon at The Royal Melbourne Hospital reviewed the Greek language version and describes the project as a major step forward for helping elderly Greek speakers understand orthopaedic procedures.

“There’s a great need within our Greek-speaking community to understand the information that’s conveyed to them during a consultation and people can often only take away a small amount of information,” Dr Pirpiris told Neos Kosmos.

“Having access to something on the computer, whether it’s at home, a hospital or at the doctor’s rooms, can help reinforce messages and helps patients understand what will be involved, in order to give their consent.”
Dr Pirpiris describes the modules as an significant tool for the future as the aging Greek Australian population grows.

“People need to know how orthopaedic surgery will affect them and how to manage their expectations of surgery.
“Being a more informed patient can mean he or she can transition through rehabilitation more easily, and hopefully help them become more confident during the treatment process and after.”
Alice Freyne, CEO of Surgical Multimedia Services says that the Greek language modules, like the English version, uses animation, voice and text to build a much clearer picture for the patient.

“We’ve demystified a lot of the jargon that’s used in health care, and what that does is improve recall and retention about the procedure that is being undertaken.”
The program will be available online and are also to be used in hospitals and by GPs and specialists, as part of an integrated process to educate patients and their families on orthopaedic surgical treatment.
Ms Freye added that the involvement of the local community had played a major role in developing the Greek language modules.
Assisting the project as translators were Victorian medical student Maritsa Papakonstantinou and her mother Androula. The Education unit of the Greek Consulate in Melbourne was also involved in the project.

For more information, you can contact Alice Freyne on afreyne@surgicalmultimedia.com or call (03) 9421 5992. For more information visit www.surgicalmultimedia.com