Making the Patient Your Partner: Communication Skills for Doctors and Other Caregivers

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Overview

Health professionals need to learn the communication skills that will create collaborative and mutually satisfying relationships with patients. The failure of doctors to relate effectively to patients results in noncompliance, malpractice suits, longer stays in hospitals and other negative outcomes. Interpersonal skills can be easily learned by studying the techniques described by Gordon and Edwards. Using cases, interviews, dialogues, and vignettes, the authors provide effective models or blueprints for health professionals to follow.

Gordon is a psychologist who has pioneered internationally recognized effectiveness training programs widely used by teachers, parents, salesmen, managers, and other professionals. He has published six books that have sold over five million copies in 17 languages. In this work, he has enlisted the expertise of Edwards, a highly respected medical doctor and educator, to provide the necessary insider's view of the health profession. Together they make a convincing case for doctors to develop closer and more collaborative relationships with patients.

The book contains black-and-white illustrations.

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Editorial Reviews

Sholeh Vaziri
This is an informative and interesting book that attempts to address the communication gap between patients and physicians. The purpose is to teach interpersonal skills to healthcare professionals that will enhance the doctor-patient relationship and foster trust. Given the widespread dissatisfaction among patients and the defensiveness physicians are feeling in the current medical-legal climate, this is an extremely important topic that deserves further evaluation. The book meets its goals without being overly critical of current practices. The book addresses physicians but also targets other healthcare professionals, including nurses, medical students, and hospice workers. The book is a collaborative effort of two authors combining experience and authority in both the fields of clinical psychology and medicine. The book includes a few black-and-white illustrations. The references are useful and up-to-date. The first several chapters of the book are an instructive guide to the methods and skills proposed by the authors to be used in communication with patients. The second half of the book focuses on specific problems and issues encountered with patients including dealing with the terminally ill patient and informing patients of adverse diagnoses. Throughout the book, case scenarios and dialogues are used to illustrate the authors' methods of communication. This is a useful book that will help healthcare practitioners at all levels sharpen their communication skills and, in doing so, encourage a trusting, collaborative relationship with the patient. The authors remind us that our primary goal in healthcare is to care for and comfort our patients.
From The Critics
Reviewer: Sholeh Vaziri, MD (University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine)
Description: This is an informative and interesting book that attempts to address the communication gap between patients and physicians.
Purpose: The purpose is to teach interpersonal skills to healthcare professionals that will enhance the doctor-patient relationship and foster trust. Given the widespread dissatisfaction among patients and the defensiveness physicians are feeling in the current medical-legal climate, this is an extremely important topic that deserves further evaluation. The book meets its goals without being overly critical of current practices.
Audience: The book addresses physicians but also targets other healthcare professionals, including nurses, medical students, and hospice workers. The book is a collaborative effort of two authors combining experience and authority in both the fields of clinical psychology and medicine.
Features: The book includes a few black-and-white illustrations. The references are useful and up-to-date. The first several chapters of the book are an instructive guide to the methods and skills proposed by the authors to be used in communication with patients. The second half of the book focuses on specific problems and issues encountered with patients including dealing with the terminally ill patient and informing patients of adverse diagnoses. Throughout the book, case scenarios and dialogues are used to illustrate the authors' methods of communication.
Assessment: This is a useful book that will help healthcare practitioners at all levels sharpen their communication skills and, in doing so, encourage a trusting, collaborative relationship with the patient. The authors remind us that our primary goal in healthcare is to care for and comfort our patients.
Booknews
Gordon, the creator of the popular Parent Effectiveness Training, and Edwards (surgery, U. on New Mexico) explain why good communication skills are necessary for health-care professionals, and present techniques for learning them. Among their topics are a collaborative model, empathic listening, self-disclosure skills, helping patients deal with an adverse diagnosis, AIDS patients, maintaining hope, finding meaning, and terminal patients. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780865692732
  • Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 7/30/1997
  • Pages: 238
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

THOMAS GORDON, Ph.D., is president of Effectiveness Training, Inc., Solana Beach, California.

W. STERLING EDWARDS, M.D., is Professor and Chairman Emeritus of the Department of Surgery at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine.

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Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction
Introduction
Ch. 1 Dissatisfaction with Doctor-Patient Relationships 1
Ch. 2 A Collaborative Model for Relating to Patients 15
Ch. 3 Empathic Listening: Applications and Benefits 39
Ch. 4 Roadblocks to Patient Communication 73
Ch. 5 Self-Disclosure Skills for Health Care Professionals 91
Ch. 6 Dealing Effectively with Conflicts 119
Ch. 7 Helping Patients Cope with an Adverse Diagnosis 135
Ch. 8 Special Problems Dealing with AIDS Patients 147
Ch. 9 Helping Patients Maintain Hope 159
Ch. 10 Helping Patients Find Meaning 167
Ch. 11 Helping the Terminal Patient 179
Ch. 12 Other Applications of Interpersonal Skills 187
Appendix: Sources of Information about Communication Skills Training for Health Professionals 199
Bibliography 203
Index 209
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