To many healthcare professionals, a certain degree of detachment is considered a necessity if they’re to continue performing their jobs professionally and impartially. Healthcare professionals can’t become too involved with their patients because otherwise every day would be emotionally exhausting, while difficult decisions would be undertaken without recourse to logic and reason alone. However, it’s important to understand that what we mean by ‘care’ transcends the corporeal alone. Patients are not damaged pieces of machinery that can be prepared by disassociated workmen, and healthcare professionals must appreciate this. Effective care is all about good communication, and whether you’re executing a patient survey or simply communicating in a one-on-one basis it’s important to bear that in mind…
Understanding specific needs
Of course, not all patients are the same, and every individual that passes through the doors of your healthcare facility ought to be treated like just that: an individual. While the majority of a patient’s specific needs will be communicated by their patient records and medical history, there are other pieces of important information that often won’t be. Some patients, for example, may not have family members or friends that can visit them while they’re receiving care, or may have a phobia, so the often frightening process of undergoing surgery is made that much worse. In these instances, just a few words of assurance or even your physical presence alone can be enough to make all the difference. Effectively communicating with your patients means asking the right questions at the right time, before acting positively on their responses.
Difficulties in communication
Not all patients will be readily communicable, however, and providing care to people with mental or physical impairments can be an altogether different challenge. Just because a patient struggles to communicate with you through normal means, it does not mean that they’re any less deserving of your attention, so it’s important that you take the time out to ensure that they’re receiving as good, if not better, care than the other more able patients in your facility. Data capture technology can help us to communicate effectively with those who would struggle to do so through traditional means, with mobile data capture, text analytics and natural language processing particularly helpful in such circumstances.
Offering care beyond the physical
The main thing to remember about patient communication is that care should transcend the merely physical alone. While it may be a routine matter for you to visit patients suffering from various illnesses, injuries and maladies, each of those patients is in actual fact a human being who may be scared, in pain or simply in need of some additional information. It’s important that you strive to look after a patient’s emotional and psychological well-being on top of their physical – you’d be surprised how far a few kind words or a little extra information will go when it comes to preparing someone for an uncertain future.
There are numerous reasons why you might want to communicate with your patients more effectively in future; you could be preparing for a medical study or you may simply wish to raise the standards of care in your healthcare facility. Whatever the reason, our accurate healthcare data capture solutions can help. Why not contact us to find out how we can help you to further bridge the gap between patients and carers this year?