Comunicazione header

Communication

The word “communication” (from the Latin terms cum (with), munire (to tie, build) and communico(to share, to impart)) is intended as the process and conveyance of information from one individual to another (or from one place to another) according to the rules of a specific code.

The value of true communication, the one about the connection between patient and physical therapists which promotes the exchange of information and not of opinions, determines the growth of both sides. It allows to comprehend and find solutions by combining experience and competence, not only individual ones but also the rehabilitative-therapeutic team ones.

It is really important to collect information from medical evaluation and tests, as well as from the physio-pathological narrative. Then, depending on how much the patient wants to put into the process so that he/she can contribute on a daily basis to reach the goal, short and medium-term strategies can be identified.

There is a need to work on the empowerment of both patient and therapist.

 

Empowerment

Empowerment identifies a process directed towards promoting the development of an individual’s potential and organization. It is a fundamental concept to grasp the challenging and unfinished dimension of motivation, his/her incremental value and growth potential. In one word, the possibility of not just going towards organization, but also to push the limits of ourselves. (Quaglino, 1999)

 

The empowerment of a physical therapist consists of studying, practicing what was learned, comparing with other people (dedicate time to the exchange of information), not judging without first learning about it and, more importantly, being happy with themselves.

An intimate equilibrium is always felt by a patient: if you work with enthusiasm, your actions will be more effective.

 

Patient’s empowerment is a strategy that, through healthcare education and the promotion of healthy behaviors, gives patients the critical tools to make the best decisions for their health and well-being, thus reducing cultural and social inequalities. It can be defined as educational therapy, which aims to reduce as much as possible the gap of knowledge between the doctor and the patient. It also aims to scale down the unrealistic expectations that are reflected in the growing consumption of health services, which are often inappropriate and mostly induced by the influent and unfortunately well-organized healthcare market.

Empowerment implies the development of greater self-awareness in order for the patient to participate in a more active manner in both his/her health and the rehabilitation process. It is also a tool that allows the patient to exercise his/her rights of being informed on all the medical aspects that pertain to him/her, as well as make more thoughtful choices regarding his/her health.

The patient is the one that invests time and money; thus he/she needs to be taken care of. We need to use a modus operandi that allows us to satisfy the patient’s requirements of hospitality and politeness. This is done by having a clean and organized environment and by dedicating enough time to the patient so that he/she can be heard and understood.

If the patient is looking for expertise and shows us a problem that he wants to solve, the attention of the therapist is necessary to read between the lines in order to understand the source of this problem, and analyze the factors that are favorable to the solution rather than the critical ones. In order to find an effective solution there needs to be an arrangement of the information. Once that is done, a project is defined and shared with the patient, explaining the methods and time requirements, and trying to offer a result in short and medium terms (patient-centered medicine).

At this point we are the ones that are responsible for guaranteeing an effective service by identifying the right strategies, so that at the end of the process we do not have to say that we made an error of assessment or judgement.