putting patients first tania thomas by liuqingyan


									   Putting Patients First
‘Championing Consumers’
           Tania Thomas
Deputy Health and Disability Commissioner
              April 2007
     A Patient/Consumer-Centred
• Health professionals do not
  deal with diseases; they deal
  with people who are
  concerned about their health.
• Ensuring that patients receive
  safe, high-quality care
  necessarily means involving
  consumers in their own care.
• This means encouraging
  clinicians and disability
  services providers to think
  about ways of integrating
  consumers' perceptions into
    Consumers are their own best
• While the health professional may be well
  informed about a particular patient's clinical
  condition, progress and treatments, the
  individual patient is an expert in the experience
  of that condition.
• Successful management of the condition
  requires the knowledge of both the professional
  and the patient, allowing a joint decision making
  process to take place.
   Joint decision making process
• Consumer identifies and defines the issues
  affecting them
• Decides and specifies the expectations of the
  consultation and the aims they have for their
  health/well being
• Identifies the strengths and resources necessary
  for the change they want
• Specify, decide and undertake the steps which
  need to be taken to reach their goals.
Active Listening
  • Easy to talk to
  • Makes an effort to
    put people at ease
  • Is warm, pleasant
    and gracious
  • Is sensitive to and
    patient with the
    anxieties of others
  • Builds rapport
  • Is a good listener
• Genuinely caring about other
• Concerned about their health
  and the context within which
  they live and work
• Available and ready to help
• Empathetic

  Some people think only
  intellect counts: knowing how
  to solve problems, knowing
  how to get by, knowing how to
  identify an advantage and
  seize it. But the functions of
  intellect are insufficient without
  courage, love, friendship,
  compassion and empathy –
  Dean Koontz.
• Empathy is the ability to appreciate another's problems
  and feelings without actually experiencing them.
• Our habit of perceiving the world as best suits our
  interests often blinds us to others’ perceptions and
  impairs our ability to work with them to resolve conflicts
  and find solutions.
• ‘Empathy' is quite simply applied imagination and only
  requires a little exertion and discipline.
• Empathy skills are those that involve paying attention to
  other people At the outset empathy involves real
  curiosity and a desire to know or understand.
• There is a genuine interest in what the person is saying
  and feeling.
            Asking questions
• You cannot have empathy without asking
  questions. Some typical ones are:
• 1. "Can you say more about that?"
  2. "Really? That's interesting. Can you be more
  3. "I wasn't aware of that. Tell me more."
  4. "I'm curious about that…let's discuss this in
  more depth."
  5. "Let me see if I understand you
  correctly…here is what I hear you say…"
        Missing the message
• Those that do not have empathy have a
  tendency to misread the other person.
• They do not ask questions to clarify.
• They do not pay attention to non-verbal cues.
• Those people who are analytical by nature will
  listen to the words, facts and figures and
  completely miss the real message of what is
  being said.
• 7% of the message is carried in the words
                   Active Listening
     Listening is not easy and requires a certain set of skills. An active
•   concentrates on what is being said (doesn't read, shuffle papers or
    otherwise non-verbally communicate a lack of interest)
•   listens to all facts and tries not to interrupt until the speaker has
    concluded his/her statements. When someone is talking for a long
    period of time, it is sometimes helpful to either take notes or ask
    them to stop so that you can feed back to them what you have heard.
•   listens for key words of interest on which to comment and ask
    questions (communicating that I am really interested and want to
    hear more or better understand what you are saying.)
•   is objective; hears people as they are, not the way you'd like them to
•   holds back personal judgments until the speaker has presented
    his/her ideas.
• Reaches a workable agreement with patients on the nature of
  their problems, appropriate goals of treatment, and roles of
  doctor and patient in management.
• Works with patients to manage effectively the full impact of
  disease and illness on themselves and their families.
• Collaborates with patients to empower them to take an active
  role in their own care. Determines patients’ ideas about their
  problems, their preferences about treatment, and their concepts
  of the responsibilities of doctor and patient in management.
• Communicates information clearly to patients so that they are
  able to understand their problems and realize what may be done
  and what they can expect. Determines how much information
  regarding their condition patients want or are able to handle.
            Partnership (continued)

• Addresses differences of opinion with consumers so that together they
  reach a conclusion that is both acceptable and safe for the patient.

• Willingness to collaborate with consumers about management, rather
  than needing always to ‘take charge.’ Awareness of personal values
  and cultural differences and how these might interfere with providing
  unbiased assistance to consumers with different values or points of
• Choose the ingredients
  carefully to meet the
• Specialist knowledge
• Consumer knowledge
• Other resources
• Uniqueness retained –
  can always find the carrot
• Communication and
  partnership sauce gives it
  the flavour.

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