This paper is focused on verbal and nonverbal elements of communication in nursing profession. It also assesses the importance of effective nursing communication process with patients in healthcare.
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Five Elements of the Communication Process
The five elements of the communication process include the sender, message, receiver, channels, and feedback. Finkleman (2012) reveals that the sender is the person, group, or even an object that starts the communication process by developing a message. The information contained in the sender’s message can either be spoken or non-verbal. Besides, the sender can either be responsive or insensible (Finkleman, 2012).
The receiver refers to the party that the message is ordained. In other cases, the receiver is known as the interpreter. The message implies the content that is conveyed from one party to the other with a view of bringing about a certain meaning and/or instruction.
Finkleman (2012) defines the channel as the medium through which the message is transferred. Popular channels include the radio, television, spoken words, and mobile phones among others. The last component of the communication process is feedback, which is the return message that the receiver refers to the source (Finkleman, 2012).
Effective Communication in Nursing
Effective communication is not only the exchange of information but also the understanding of the sentiments and purposes of the conveyed content (Judd, 2013). Various studies have shown that effective communication is crucial to the delivery of medical services in healthcare institutions.
Judd (2013) posits that good communication between the healthcare professionals and patients is paramount to the accomplishment of medical goals in hospital settings. There is a need for the nurses to understand the patients while exhibiting the required politeness, compassion, and honesty.
Effective communication also requires them to exercise patience, confidentiality, and language. However, Judd (2013) affirms that effective communications relies not only on the physical capabilities of the caregivers but also their levels of training and practice. For this reason, nursing communication calls for a blend of scientific, technical, and intellectual skills to accomplish the objectives of clinical tasks (Judd, 2013).
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Improving Communication Process in Nursing
The improvement of communication between medical practitioners and patients is essential in everyday healthcare practice. At first, the process should be improved through the consideration of individual values and views to ensure assertiveness.
The improvement of communication, especially in the healthcare sector, demands the combination of a set of skills that include spoken, written, confidence, and the ability to realize and comprehend individual sentiments and those of the patient (Vardaman et al., 2012).
Communication is also improved by ensuring active listening to get a glimpse of both the information and emotions of the correspondent. The recipient should also pay attention to nonverbal communication such as body language, gestures, and facial expressions (Vardaman et al., 2012).
Why Healthcare Professionals should be concerned about the Communication Process
At the outset, the communication between nurses and patients serves as a therapeutic process (Vardaman et al., 2012). The patients play a vital role in communicating their reservations and distresses to the nurse with a view of initiating a problem-solving process.
On the other hand, the healthcare professional receives, analyzes, and provides feedback to the patient concerning the kind of illness and recommendation on the conceivable treatment plans (Vardaman et al., 2012). Furthermore, vulnerable patients require the effective communications skills of the nurses as they sometimes fail to reveal their reservations.
In this case, effective nursing communication becomes an integral part of the realization, diagnosis, and formulation of a conceivable solution to their medical problems. In addition, healthcare professionals should be concerned about effective communication because it improves patient safety. Finally, communication also helps in the establishment of teamwork with a view of improving patient care and safety.
Finkleman, A. (2012). Leadership and Management for Nurses: Core Competence for Quality Care. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.
Judd, M. (2013). Broken Communication in Nursing can kill: Teaching Communication is Vital. Creative Nursing, 19(2), 101-104.
Vardaman, J., Cornell, P., Gondo, M., Amis, J., Townsend-Gervis, M., & Thetford, C. (2012). Beyond Communication: The Role of Standardized Protocols in a Changing Health Care Environment. Health Care Management Review, 37(1), 88-97.