Sit Back and Listen (Interpersonal communications)

Sit Back and Listen (Interpersonal communications)

Competencies:

  • Produce timely documentation and communication that is clear, concise, and organized, in a way that optimizes patient care and minimizes medical errors.
  • Use effective listening, observational and communication that is clear, concise, and organized, in a way that optimizes patient care and minimizes medical errors.

Reflection:

Interpersonal communication is an extremely broad topic that is necessary for medicine but can be a difficult skill to quantify and thus learn. However, since it’s applied in almost all interactions there are plenty of opportunities to pick it up. One example is interprofessional care, medicine isn’t a solo sport, it’s a team event involving a diverse group of healthcare professionals, the patient, their family, and potentially others. When coordinating the ideas and beliefs of so many people it’s helpful to have a leader to organize the chaos so the patient can have a clear set of options and recommendations to work with. The leader of this team is often a physician on the primary team as their in the best position to coordinate care. Knowing this, physicians should always be open to and prepared to direct a group when it’s in the interest of the patient. Another example is effective listening, observational and communication techniques. As a medical student and future physician, I am always trying to learn from though around me. Whether that be residents and attendings, other healthcare professionals, my peers, or my patients. Sitting still and listening is often one of the most productive things you can do from a learning standpoint. This is especially true with patients, we busy many physicians go into rapid-fire question mode but often letting a patient tell you’re their story will yield relevant details you never thought to ask for. Whether learning from another healthcare professional there’s always a time to talk as well to elicit more information. As I continue my training, I continually work at honing the balance between these two, especially with patients. My first goal is mainly directed towards patients, trying to find the line where I can efficiently obtain their stories but also not be in the room for an hour talking about the patient’s 7th cousin thrice removed. My second goal is to improve my leadership skills, I believe this will come partly through doing as I progress through my training as well as from continuing to learn so I am able to effectively guide and answer the questions of my team.

Above is my evaluation summary from my anesthesia sub-I.

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