‘’They don't necessarily understand the prescription,
but they do remember the communication’’
The fact that patient communication is powerful is as much true as the reality that it brings along some challenges to healthcare professionals when it comes to actual communication. The treatment options are already complex (subjective to the disease and care) apart from the adverse effects that might occur. Patients are themselves at the edge of crisis. Dealing with patients' emotions simultaneously can become critical. The good news is, amidst all of these scenarios, effective communication stands up as a savior.
Communication can be a catalyst in a patient's healing journey.
Prior research indicates that the nature of doctor-patient communication highly affects and can predict patient health outcomes. While a simple direct talk can be therapeutic, indirect routes hold equal significance. Both carry the potential to lessen a patient's anxiety, provide comfort to them, and eventually stimulate patient satisfaction.
The outcomes all include - patient understanding, trust built, moreover, a well-balanced recovery. Further, they add up to intermediate outcomes like better self-care practices, informed decisions, and improved adherence.
All in all a positive healing journey is ensured.
According to experts, specific patient communication strategies can help doctors to improve their patient interactions which in turn enhances patient experience.
5 Things about Patient Communication-
1. You need to devote time to explanations
The most important thing is a genuine, caring presence that you can create by showing interest in the patient. Let the patient know that you are equally interested to educate them as much as they are willing to get involved. Explain in lay terms what is going on and how you can help.
If the patient is unable to ask a single question, that's a red flag. In such cases, invite the patient to tell you what they've understood. Use the “ask-tell-ask” approach to provide explanations to patients.
2. One size does not fit all
Never practice a standard mode of communication for all the patients. Be sensitive to the cultural values and personal experiences of every individual. Some of them might like a more collaborative style whereas some would want a clear, simple recommendation that is more direct. Health literacy plays a prominent role here.
Patient experience carries a large significance so as to understand the patient’s current behavior. Start with the ‘’ask-tell-ask’’ theory again!
3. Addressing emotions is the key
Considering the ailment, it is important to realize that a patient is already in the grip of fear. Thus, dealing with emotions is the most important aspect of patient communication. An empathetic response is a stepping stone. Wearing that amazing smile and a witty joke here and there will only add to the comfort.
If a patient is deeply distressed or panicked, which at times he must be, acknowledge that. Identify the emotion the patient is experiencing.
4. Regular communication results in higher retention
Communication is not just a one-time thing; keeping it consistent is important. It shows that you value your patients and this action creates a sense of belongingness in the patient. It then adds up to the retention rate.
Various modes of communication will create varied impacts and unleash the power of all. A patient engagement platform like Nth Sense paves a path to powerful communication.
5. Patient feedback matters more than you know
There is a notion that asking for feedback might undervalue a doctor's profession/practice. However, patient feedback data on your services/treatment, in-clinic ambiance, and content through various channels (YouTube, Social Media, Blogs, etc.) matters way more than the traditional times. Needless to state that today's world is all about online reviews and feedback.
Thus, never underestimate the potential of patient feedback.
Why do all these errands?
Well, just one line answer, to grow your practice!
All these acts offer the 4 following benefits and ultimately make healthcare a happy affair-
Facilitate efficient patient communication
Enhance patient experience
Instigate patient satisfaction, and
Improve overall patient care
Nth Sense- your communication partner, making all of it effective.
Perceiving the complete scenario, Nth Sense stands strong as a partner in effective patient communication for all healthcare professionals.
With customized and real-time strategies, Nth Sense solves all communication problems with its highly preferred patient engagement solutions.
Get in touch to create a plan that works for your patients.
Let us communicate!