Introduction to Communication in Health & Social Care or Children’s and Young People’s Settings
1.1 Understand why communication is important in the work setting Effective communication is needed to motivate people and build relationships in Health & Social Care setting. 1.2 Be able to meet the communication needs and language needs, wishes and preferences of individuals Asking whether they or relatives have a particular language need/communication need Reading reports and notes about service user that provide information on speech/language issues, learning difficulties, disabilities – hearing or visual impairment or physical condition – stroke/cleft palate, that may affect their ability to communicate. Being aware that an individual’s culture, ethnicity and nationality effect their language preferences and needs. Observe people who use your setting to see how they use their communication and language skills. Ask Supervisor/Mentor and specialist professionals such as speech and language therapists, occupational therapists and social workers for information, advice and support on how best to communicate with adults who have special communication needs. 1.3 Be able to reduce barriers to communication
Environmental factors – noise, poor lighting can prevent a person from noticing non-verbal communication and could reduce a hearing impaired person’s ability to lip-read. Also being too hot or cold cause discomfort and those that lack privacy discourage people from expressing their feelings and problems. Development Stage – a person’s development stage could limit their ability to communicate and may be a barrier to effective communication, if you don’t take this into account when choosing your words or way of talking to them. Don’t use long sentences, complex words or unusual phrases with young children, for example. Sensory Deprivation and Disability – visual impairment may reduce a person’s ability to see faces or read written signs and leaflets. Hearing impairment may limit conversation. Conditions such a cerebral palsy, stroke, cleft palate, downs syndrome and autism tend to limit a persons ability to communicate, verbally and non-verbally – difficulties interpreting non-verbal communication are typical of autism. Language and Cultural Differences – the UK is a multi-cultural country with a mix of different ethnic groups and language communities. English may be a second or third language for some children or adults and may not be spoken or understood at all by others. Communication in written or spoken English may not be easy or possible for people in this situation. Similarly people from different cultural groups may interpret non-verbal behaviour in different ways, misunderstanding messages. Jargon, Slang and use of acronyms – these forms of language only make sense to people with specialist knowledge. A person who doesn’t have this specialist knowledge won’t understand the message. Practitioners working in children and young people settings sometimes use jargon and acronyms to communicate quickly with each other. Teenagers sometimes use forms of slang to communication with each other in ways their parent and teachers don’t understand. Dialect – people who speak English using a regional dialect (for example Glaswegian or Liverpudlian) pronounce words that are specific to the local area. A child or adult who isn’t from the same area may not understand a local dialect. Distress, emotional difficulties and health problems – some conditions, depression and stroke for example, may affect an individual’s ability to send and receive messages effectively. Illness and injury can also cause people to withdraw from communication situations. Similarly, when a person is angry, aggressive or upset they may find it difficult to communicate; their own communication may be misunderstood by others. 1.4 Be able to apply principles and practice relation to confidentiality at work Only talking about service...
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