Communication In Healthcare

Topics: Health care, Communication, Health care provider Pages: 9 (2252 words) Published: May 1, 2014


Everybody knows that health professionals are very busy people. Their minds are on so many different tasks that need to be completed by a deadline, not to mention the many unplanned things that occur spontaneously throughout their shift. So you might find yourself asking how they manage to get everything done and stay cool, calm and collected. The answer to this is simply teamwork; and the foundation to brilliant teamwork is excellent communication (Health Foundation, 2014). Defined, communication is a deed where information is given or received from one person to another in various modes such as spoken word or body language, either intentionally or unintentionally (de Valenzuela, Julia Scherba, 1992). This means that it helps everybody involved achieve common goals that encircle delivering safe and reliable care to people who need it the most. Without effective communication in the healthcare industry, countless things can and will go wrong. So how exactly does communication work?

The basic model, or theory, is that there is at least one sender giving a message to a receiving person or group of people, who then respond or give feedback to the initial piece of information or question. This continues until all available information is gained from both parties and the conversation comes to a close. Both parties have a specific role when communicating. The sender is generally the one who initiates conversation. They usually have a reason for why they are sending the message, whether it’s urgent, kind, abusive, or important. They also must make the message clear and concise for the receiver to understand what point is trying to be made and how. The receiver on the other hand, is the person or group of people who decodes the message that has been transmitted to them. Again, this could be verbal, or non-verbal, such as actually speaking to someone, writing a letter, or body language in general. Some things that can affect this are their emotional state; are they angry, scared, or excited? Has the message been relayed appropriately so that the meaning is not misconstrued? Is the receiver able to decipher the message, in regards to their cognitive capacity and their senses? Important factors that need to be taken into account in effective communication are a person’s senses. Many people find that they need to be actively looking at the person whom is speaking to them to ensure they hear correctly. It is important for the receiver to understand and respond with feedback for the conversation to continue. The response should be again clear and concise so that a mutual understanding can be reached (O’Toole. 2014).

Messages can be relayed and received incorrectly, and both parties can be left feeling confused and unsure of what the situation may be. Respect, empathy and trust are essential factors in mutual understanding, and without these, a conversation could result in disaster. People need to be treated equally while they are being cared for by a health professional, as they are a person, not just another task for that day that has been squeezed into an already tight schedule. They need to trust that the health professional is doing solely what is best for them, and that he or she will listen to any queries or comments that the person may have. This encourages understanding and therapeutic relationships.

A therapeutic relationship in health care is when the benefits for both the client and health care professional achieve goals and good outcomes that result in satisfaction and potential quality of life. This can only be achieved once mutual understanding has been reached between both parties. In the health professions, therapeutic relationships are built to help provide new and correct information, as well as to better understand different responses people may have to health problems, care options, decision making and to generally enable exceptional...
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