Our aim is that over time, students will use their experience, judgement and imagination to respond and adapt to the many different communication challenges they’ll encounter as foundation doctors and beyond.
Learning to be a skilled communicator
Good communication is fundamental to being an effective clinician. While teaching and learning in this area is often referred to as ‘communication skills’, the Communication for Clinical Practice (CCP) team at Liverpool believe there’s more to helping our student doctors become skilled communicators than simply teaching communication skills.
Communicating with patients and colleagues is not like following a formula - each person is different and many clinical situations are unique in some way. As such, there are relatively few communication skills that are guaranteed to help in each and every clinical situation.
In learning about clinical communication we acknowledge that our student doctors will learn some new skills. More importantly though, students learn about the need to respond flexibly to patients and colleagues, to be clinically curious about patients, to listen attentively and be empathic.
Students learn about how their attitudes and values shape their interactions with others and about the importance of reflecting on their own communication, and that of peers and more experienced clinicians.
We also recognise that each student doctor is unique and ways of communicating that feel right for one may not feel right for another. We support student doctors to experiment with different approaches to communication so they can work out what feels authentic for them as individuals.
Our teaching takes place in a small group setting. Student feedback indicates that they value these sessions and the opportunity to work with simulated patients (professional role-players acting as patients).
The Facilitator was absolutely wonderful! I learned a lot and these are skills which I am going to take with me into my practise and help me improve as a Clinician.Liverpool Student Doctor
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