June 27, 2011
Personal and Professional Health Care Communication "Health communication refers to health-related transactions between individuals who are attempting to maintain health and avoid illness" (Northouse & Northouse, 1998, p. 20). The effectiveness and therapeutic nature of communication between individuals in any health care relationship has a strong influence on the success of interpersonal relationships and health outcomes.
Definition of Health Care Communication Health care communication is any human transaction that focuses on health-related issues. Health care communication refers to any verbal, nonverbal, or written exchanges between …show more content…
When dispensing information to patients, professionals need to include family members unless the patients prohibit them (Northouse & Northouse, 1998). Patients also should make their wishes known to their family members regarding their health care decisions, so they can make an informed decision for the patient if he or she is incapacitated in the future. Effective communication in all of these relationships is imperative for successful patient outcomes (Northouse & Northouse, 1998).
Potential barriers to effective communication between the individuals in these relationships may exist because of role ambiguity and their expectations of each other (Northouse & Northouse, 1998).
In professional-patient relationships, individuals may not know their role as patients or what their health care providers expect of them. The multitude of health care professionals, with whom patients have met, may also cause confusion for them. Language barriers and low education levels may result in patients misunderstanding health care information and education (Northouse & Northouse, 1998). Language barriers make it difficult for patients to communicate their symptoms or needs to their health care providers.
Ineffective communication between professionals may not only