Health and Social Care
P1. Explain the role of effective communication and interpersonal interaction within a health and social care context.
In my Unit 1: Developing Effective Communication in Health and Social Care assignment which is task 1, I will be explaining the importance and why should health care professionals develop their effective communication skills and interpersonal interaction as they will be dealing a wide range of people within health and social care context.
Effective communication in health and social care
Effective communication is when two or more people communicate effectively without having difficulties to get the message across; it means that when they interact both verbally and non-verbally the other person will not misinterpret the message. Listening attentively is a key skill that can be use to communicate effectively.This will ensure that the other person will not get the wrong idea of the message other than that it is also important to ensure that the information received is accurate; one must clarify by asking questions to find out the exact meaning of the message to avoid conflict and misunderstanding. Furthermore, communicating clearly using appropriate body language, gesture, verbal and non-verbal cues will give the correct information that the other person need.
In health and social care, it is important to communicate effectively with the patients, service users and their family and relatives.Working in a health and social care setting can be very challenging, as they will be dealing with people who come from different types of background, culture and religion that’s why it is essential for health care professionals to communicate effectively to ensure that the needs of the patient or service user is met. In addition, effective communication helps to build trust, create a good rapport with others, understand the care needs of others and make others feel secure and valued.
There are many ways to support individuals with effective communication; they use different method to be able to communicate with other people effectively such as British Sign language, Makaton, Braille, the use of signs, symbols, pictures and writing, finger spelling, communication passport, human technological aids to communication (hearing aids, text phones, relay systems and minicoms), and many other types of method that they prefer to use.
People who use the services sometimes cannot express themselves fully and cannot communicate effectively because of their disability or different use of language. In order to remove these barriers it is important to communicate using their prefered method of the patient and service user.
For example, the patient in the hospital cannot speak fluently in English. Therefore the doctor cannot understand and get the message correctly. To remove this barrier, the doctor can ask for a person who can speak the same language as the patient and can also speak fluently in English, that person called interpreter. Interpreter job is to interpret one language to another. This will help get the information that they need accurately.
Interpersonal interaction is important in health and social care setting both in one-to-one and group interaction, as it is not only concern of what the person is saying but also how they deliver the message. By using the right speech, language and body language will enable individuals to know what the message is all about and help understand what a person is saying. It is also important that health care professionals should know the right speech they should be using when communicating with the patient or service user as interacting with their colleagues is different from interacting with the patient or service user because there are words that the health care professionals are using that they couldn’t understand, and these words or term are called jargon. If health care professionals failed to communicate effectively with the patient or service user it will affect their health because of the imprecise information that has been given that would lead to not meeting their right care needs.
One-to-one communication in health and social care setting
One-to-one communication is an interaction that involves two people. In a hospital, it could be the interaction between the patient and the doctor talking about the patient’s condition. It is very important that patient and doctor are very clear in what they are saying to ensure that the information given regarding with the patients condition is accurate to prevent from mistreatment. Using words or term that would be hard for the patient to understand is a bad idea, as it will only lead to confusion. Doctor must be responsible to check that they are being understood correctly and also the information that they received from the patient is correct by repeating it to them. Moreover, using body language can also help the communication more effective and this include sending message through our eyes, tone of voice, facial expression, arms and hands, and gesture. Doctor and patient should maintain eye-to-eye contact with each other to show interest by just focusing on what they are saying and to avoid distraction.
One-to-one communication also occurs in the form of sending an email or letter. For example, nurse will send an email to the doctor regarding with the patient’s condition. This communication is between colleagues and so they will be using formal communication to communicate with each other. Communicating with respect with the other professional will develop trust in each other.
Other one-to-one communication may occur between a key worker and a nurse, a midwife and a pregnant mother.
Group communication in health and social care setting
Group communication involves three or more people who share the same thoughts and idea. It could be working with other professionals to meet the needs of the patient. For example in a hospital, if the stroke patient needs to see the doctor, speech and language therapist, nurse, physiotherapist and occupational therapist. Professionals who will deal with the stroke patient will arrange a formal meeting to discuss the patient condition and to plan for the patient needs.
Professionals in this meeting can use a medical term to communicate, as they can easily understand it. It is good to use a positive body language in this meeting such as eye contact, good body posture and using hand gesture on explaining on something. To have an effective communication, Health care professionals should not make assumptions as if they know everything because the purpose on gathering the meeting is to take others opinion because each of them are expert on a certain field.