(3) Sit down when speaking to the patient. Although you probably have
dozens of things you need to be doing at that moment, try to relax. Don't stand at the
doorway or sit on the edge of your seat, as if you are preparing to jump and run as soon
as you can get away.
Face the speaker and maintain eye contact.
Provide for privacy.
Avoid interruptions and other distracting influences.
b. Verbal Communication Skills.
Let the patient do the talking.
Keep questions brief and simple.
(3) Use language that is understandable to the patient. Avoid acronyms
and medical/nursing jargon if the patient is nonmedical.
Ask one question at a time. Give the patient time to answer.
(5) Clarify patient responses to questions, not just for your own use, but also
to let the patient know that you are listening (be sure you really are) and that you
(6) Avoid leading questions. You want the patient to tell you what he is
feeling, not what he thinks you want to hear. So avoid putting words in his mouth. For
example, it might be better to ask, "How are you feeling?" rather than "I suppose you're
feeling rested after your nap."
Avoid how or why questions; they tend to be intimidating.
(8) Avoid the use of clich statements like, "Don't worry; it'll be all right." or
"Your doctor knows best."
(9) Avoid questions, which require only a simple "yes" or "no" response.
You want to encourage the patient to talk to you.
(10) Avoid interrupting the patient. If you need to ask a question, wait until he
has completed his thought.
c. Interviewing Techniques. The following terms represent skills often used to
foster better communication. Before using these techniques, remember that you must
do what feels comfortable and natural to you. Even though you may have the best of
intentions, if you do not sound sincere, what are the chances of someone really opening