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Health Care Communication


The basic elements of communication that the leader and any speaker should have are; the source, the message itself, encoding, channel, receiver, decoding and the last element of communication is feedback. The source is the basis for communication and it is the place where the idea of communication emerges, it here where the speaker formulates an idea to communicate to another person. The source is influenced by some external stimuli such as those found in books, journals, magazines, radios and televisions. The source of communication can also come from internal attributes such as thinking about a particular topic. The message is transmitted from the source of the idea to the correct form of the message itself, which is coiled in the form ready to be send to the next receiver/recipient. The message must be grafted to meet the needs of the audience, messages communicated between friends differs from that message between a superior and a subordinate staff. The other element is encoding which is how the message is transmitted to the next recipient (Mario, 2012). This message is converted into a suitable form ready for transmission. The encoded message still will require the channel of communication n order to reach then next party. The form of the encoded depends entirely on the medium of transmission, for instance if the message is to be communicated through spoken words or written words, this will decide on the right form of communication to be used.

The channel is the medium of communication where now the message will be communicated from one person to the other/recipient and this done without changing the content of the message. The channel of communication ranges from radios, a piece of paper, television sets, internet, newspapers and emails. In other words the channel performs the function of giving a pathway where the message is smoothly passed on from the sender to the receiver. The successful message is then sent to the receiver which is any party or recipient of the message. A receiver of this message depends on the form and channel used in sending the message and can be a piece of paper, a television set or evens a computer. The audience will be listening to the radio, reading a piece of paper or watching a television set where the message is presented and varied interpretations follow to make sense of the content in the message. Decoding involves the receiver internalizing the message according to his/her ability and expectations. The final step in the communication process is feedback where the receiver takes time to compare and contrast the message to prior experiences one had or the probable external influences. These basic elements of communication are incorporated with the effective elements of communication as explained in the following paragraphs.  

Effective communication is simply the ability the get the message across to the target receiver and this also entails the message sender to try and capture the attention of audience and ensure that they understand the idea. While the basic elements soothes one to the communication ability, rules of effective communication in health care differs greatly as this is just about professionalism of the stakeholders in the health care firms such as doctors and nurses. Some of the rules include being honest to the patient concerning the patient’s status and one’s ability to treat that particular problem. Other rules are to avoid making assumptions about the status of the patient, asking adequate questions and using the language that is to the level of the patient, as well as always being positive towards the clients (Darley, 2002).

In health care there are so many elements that contribute to effective communication, which is centered on the audience, these elements include; the credibility that the person who is communicating has; credibility makes people believe what the speaker is saying or communicating. Credibility sometimes come hand-in-hand with ones rank or the speakers rank in an organization, which actually coerce the people at the lower rank to listen to their leader. Leaders can also demonstrate their credibility through their expertise in specific fields and entirely helps to convince individuals that truly what they are talking about is real and that other people and workers who have keen and stake interest can handle it. Credibility in effective communication relieves the tension that one’s followers have that they come to believe that their leader will not lie to them even though they know that he or she knows more than they do. The second effective element in communication is having an emotional connection with the listeners/patients/clients, emotional bonds thus helps people to believe in what one is saying and it matters a lot to them and this so vital to present day leaders. Emotional connection with the listeners and creating emotional bonds is achieved through giving people undivided attention, The leader should also try and engage in the light activities and  should also have interest in his or her team members’ career growth/development.

Finally, a leader who is also the speaker must develop great enthusiasm about the general progress of the organization and that of his or her team players in the organization. At the end of the day, emotional connection will have the greatest influence on the followers’ perception of their leader as an effective communicator. The third effective elements of communication is the speaker’s or leader’s ability and mode of appealing to those he/she is communicating to, this is to appeal to their sense of reason. Today’s leaders use the power of their analytical skills, they employ strengths in strategic thinking, and problem solving skills, this is enough to compel and influence outcomes of the communication (Servelline, 2008). Leaders also use or rely on gathered data and analysis to create perception of their expertise and authority in the various topics addressed. The above three elements of effective communication reinforce one another. In health care the leader who is mostly doctors, nurses, psychiatrics, and physicians should show respect to their audience who are in this context patients and their supporters. For the provider to encourage reluctant consumers to communicate candidly, he/she should ensure and promise the client of confidentiality and encourage them of the importance of speaking out. Although, there might be effective communication elements in health care, cultural differences may also play a major role in influencing an individual’s communication ability. Some taboo topics in different cultures the patient will not be free to speak about as some raises a lot of tension and hence this will compromise the communication pathway.   

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