Exploring the Quality of Communication during Interactions Between Medical Students and Standardized Patients Portraying Communication Disorders
Despres, Margaret Jocelyne
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Communication is important in healthcare because it is linked to patient safety. Patients with communication disorders are vulnerable to medical error due to increased communication breakdowns. The University of Washington created a seminar for training medical students how to effectively communicate with patients who have communication disorders. The purpose of this study was to identify the key behaviors of competent communication with patients with communication disorders to inform modifications to the current measurement tool for medical students’ competency of communication. This study employed two focus groups, in which participants viewed medical students conducting brief interviews with standardized patients portraying communication disorders and discussed helpful and unhelpful communication behaviors. A convenience sample of participants were recruited from the University of Washington graduate speech language pathology program. Analyses of focus group discussions revealed 9 key behaviors for competent communication, which were based on the frequency with which behaviors were mentioned participants’ discussions about the importance of behaviors. These results will inform future changes to the rating tool for medical students’ communication competence with communication impaired patients. It also may be used to re-evaluate the content of the training seminar for medical students, and could be a resource provided to speech language pathologists to help them educate colleagues in effective patient provider communication with patients with communication impairments.
- Speech