Health and Social Care involves working with people, therefore communication is one of the most important aspects of Health and Social Care. In care settings communication may involve interactions with clients, families and other professionals. Communication is so essential to the Health and Social Care settings because only with effective communication in place can the needs of clients be catered for. Good communication must take place between clients and professionals, professionals and professionals, and between the professionals and the client’s families. If communication is effective with all who are involved then greater information and understanding about the client’s individual needs can be gathered and service users can be cared for. Service users often feel anxious when visiting a health, social or nursery setting so it is vital to relate to and gain the trust of service users when communicating, they need supporting to be able to relax.
Communication in health, social and early years settings is not just about giving and receiving information; when communicating all care values should be applied to make communication as effective as possible, such as; promoting service users rights, fostering equality and diversity and maintaining confidentiality. There are a number of different forms of communication that are applied in the health and social care settings, for example; Oral, written, computerised and special methods.
Oral communication is a spoken verbal interaction i.e. speech, it is used to give information, receive information and to exchange ideas. Oral communication is important as it allows people to exchange ideas as well as build relationships. To effectively communicate orally all care values must be applied, and qualities such as caring, reliability, patience and sharing all play a part in building a relationship with the client. This form of communication requires a range of skills, such as being able to start and finish conversations, the ability to understand and respond to non-verbal language, considering your own non-verbal language, clarifying. Without these skills communication barriers will be created. Care workers also need to be able to consider individual needs, for example a nursery teacher would use a completely different vocabulary when speaking with children than with other professionals.
Relationships can be built in the health or social care setting, through this, clients become more trusting and open up more. For example this would be especially effective between a counsellor and client, if a good relationship is built between the client and counsellor, the client will more likely completely open up about anything that troubles them, the more they talk about, the more effectively the counsellor can work with the client to help improve their life.
In a conversation if someone doesn’t understand something, they can ask for it to be explained. For example, if a care worker gives a colleague instructions and the colleague doesn’t understand what the care worker has asked of her, she can ask the care worker to explain it to her again.
Information can be transferred immediately via oral communication, this is much less time consuming than other forms of communication and can be acted upon immediately. For example, if a pregnant lady told a midwife about some pains she was worried about then the midwife can straight away look into the problem with scans etc.
Oral communication plays a part in providing for an individual’s needs, for example, a senior care workers oral interactions with the elderly may help to satisfy their social needs if they don’t often see family or friends.
Skills can be used to relate to others and to help other interpret the meaning behind what is said more easily. Oral communication is often informal in health and social care settings; this helps to give professionals an idea of how people feel. For