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The Importance Of Communication For Patient Care

965 words - 4 pages

Communication is the beginning steps to providing an individual with patient care. Patient care can be interrupted when there is a lack of communication or a misunderstanding, unfortunately any disruption can lead to adverse events and/or death. Clinical communication is very different from the basic elements of effective communication. Health care communication also requires seven essential steps as opposed to basic communication which requires fewer steps. Health care communication and adherence improves by building physician-patient relationship.
Basic Communication
Communication begins with two individuals, or an individual and a group. The basic elements of communication are the sender’s ability to send a message to the receiver, confirm that they’ve understood and receive feedback from the receiver. The difference between effective and basic communication is the receiver’s ability to retain and repeat the information and/or provide feedback.
Health Care Communication
Many differences exist between health care communication and basic communication; these differences can also result in different outcomes such as lack of clinical communication or misunderstanding can result in adverse events or even death. Physician approach can also have impact on adherence. Typically a conversation begins with relating to one’s listener to establish active listening. However, in healthcare relating to one’s patient may be viewed as offensive, which is why in the article Essential Elements of Communication in Medical Encounters: The Kalamazoo Consensus Statement, Gregory PhD identifies the seven essential sets of communication, which are:
build the doctor—patient relationship; (2) open the discussion; (3) gather information; (4) understand the patient's perspective; (5) share information; (6) reach agreement on problems and plans; and (7) provide closure.
Establishing a provider and patient relationship ensures that the patient is comfortable enough to communicate his or her problems to ensure the right treatment path and to promote adherence to agreed treatment plan. The provider must also explain treatment and prognosis in terms that the patient is familiar with to ensure full understanding. The communication in a healthcare setting is also circular in contrast to basic communication; the patient expresses his or her concerns and waits for provider feedback until an action plan is reach between the two.
Encouraging Communication
Adverse events in healthcare can occur for many reasons; one reason may be because a patient does not fully understand his or her prognosis or treatment plan or he or she may feel it is of no value. To improve communication between the provider and patient Beach MD & ScM MD suggest improving relationships, because “all illness, care and healing processes occur in relationship—relationships of an individual with self and others” (Beach, ScM, 2006). In today’s economy it is extremely difficult to provide the care a health...

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