Effective communication in Social Care and Health

In health and social care, ensuring that patients receive adequate care goes beyond making diagnoses, performing procedures, and administering medications. Effective social and health care integrates the holistic approach and healthcare personnel’s ability to incorporate every aspect of interaction and expertise. Health care workers will interact with different types of patients on a daily basis. Therefore, they should be able to empathize when interacting with patients and families facing complicated medical problems. And when disagreements arise, a health care worker with effective communication skills should be able to diffuse the situation appropriately.

Some of the most critical communication skills that a social care provider should have is the ability to initiate, organize, and keep a conversation going to draw as much information from the patient. Another vital skill is the ability to effectively use non-verbal communication skills for patients who might have problems communicating verbally. Good listening skills are also fundamental in creating a level of understanding between the patient and the provider. Effective communication skills also include the ability to identify and understand cultural differences that might influence the communication of a resident.

The Importance of Effective communication

Good communication makes the residents feel at ease. It is very normal for people to feel anxious about their health, undergoing tests, waiting for a diagnosis, the treatment or procedures they might need to undergo, and all the uncertainty surrounding their health. All the pressure and anxiety might render a patient rude and insensitive. The ability to communicate with them calmy will help lower the tension and enhance their confidence.

Also, effective communication helps the patient feel in control. Some patients may have conditions that limit their ability to perform even the most basic tasks in their lives. This often makes them feel helpless and out of control, which can lower their chances of recovery. Talking and interacting with them can help assure them that they still have a say about their lives even in the bedridden condition.

Moreover, good communication also makes patients feel valued. Dealing with long term medical conditions can be very frustrating.  Spending quality time with such people, listening to them, and understanding what they are going through is the best way to assure them that they are valued and loved. This can only be achieved through effective communication.

Studies show that healthcare organizations with strong communication policies have better patient outcomes than those without effective communication procedures. Unfortunately, the value of effective communication in social care is often undervalued. Even with the most knowledgeable workforce, if they lack effective communication skills, the knowledge may not be of enough help. This illustrates that effective communication is one of the best approaches that can be used to improve patient outcomes.

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Burgener, Audrey M. “Enhancing communication to improve patient safety and to increase patient satisfaction.” The health care manager 39, no. 3 (2020): 128-132.

Mirzaei, Tala, and Nicole Kashian. “Revisiting Effective Communication Between Patients and Physicians: Cross-Sectional Questionnaire Study Comparing Text-Based Electronic Versus Face-to-Face Communication.” Journal of medical Internet research 22, no. 5 (2020): e16965.

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