Promoting communication in health,social care or children's and young people's settings
Health and social care professionals need good communication skills to develop positive relationships and share information with people using services. They also need to be able to communicate well with people’s families and/or carers and their own colleagues and other professionals. Communication is the process of sharing information between two or more individuals in order to achieve a desired action or effect. It has being emphasised especially amongst all professionals after the tragic death of Victoria Climbie in 2000 as a result of abuse from her guardians. This brought about a lot of criticism to professionals involved in her care and brought about changes to the Children`s Act 1998 after an intensive inquiry by Lord Lamming. A report was published highlighting the investigations carried out and changes that needed to be made in the Health and Social care system. Communication can be established in different ways depending on the preference of the individual and the skills they possess. In the work setting care staff find out how individuals communicate by reading care plans, handover, talking to other professionals involved, families, other clients, staff and the individual themselves. There are different factors to consider when promoting effective communication. This may include language and understanding. It is important to question whether there is a common language that both parties understand. Mental comprehension is another factor to consider during effective communication. According to the Mental Health Capacity Act 2010, an individual must be deemed to have capacity to make decisions unless it has being proven that they cannot do this and documented. Arrangements are put in place about decisions regarding all aspects of their life if the individual reaches a stage where they cannot make certain decisions themselves. It is important that individuals develop an awareness of the different cultures in the society. Cultural variations in communication can have different meanings to individuals. E.g. a non-verbal gesture in one culture can be acceptable and in another culture can be conceived as rude. Environment is also important when communicating. Information passed depending on the environment can be received differently depending on the skills of the individual. It is important to ensure that it is safe, there is sustainable noise and there are no distractions. This is emphasised especially when working with people who have learning disabilities or have health problems that cause them to have short term memory. E.g. Alzheimer’s In order for individuals to communicate effectively, they must identify the different styles and methods of communicating to meet the needs and preferences of individuals. It is recognised that communication is made up of 7%speech, 38% tone of voice and 55% body language. This is important especially when working with very vulnerable service users. There are two different methods of how individuals communicate and they include verbal and non-verbal communication. Verbal communication includes speech, computer aids and vocal cues (tone of voice, loudness, pitch). Non-verbal include gestures, facial expressions, posture, eye contact, symbols, pictures writing, physical contact, clothing, hair style, painting, dancing , musical instruments and communication passports. Another way to communicate with the service users is through active support. This is where staff members encourage individuals to do as much for themselves as possible to maintain their independence and physical abilities. It also encourages people with disabilities to maximise their own potential and independence. This demonstrates that the worker is working through a person centred approach. It is important to respond effectively to an individual`s reactions when communicating. Depending on what...
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