Sunday, September 23, 2012

A clever mnemonic to help doctors respond to a patient's emotions

While most doctors are great medical technicians, they often are not good communicators. NURSE is a very helpful tool, which can help doctors to show empathy to their patients.

This was developed by OncoTalk at http://depts.washington.edu/oncotalk/learn/modules.html

N = NAMING. Begin by naming the patient's emotion
U = UNDERSTANDING. Appreciate the patient’s predicament or feelings
R = RESPECTING. Acknowledging a patient’s emotions is an important step in showing empathy.
S = SUPPORTING. You can express concern, and acknowledge the patient’s efforts to cope.
E = EXPLORING. Link the “I” of the doctor to the “you” of the patient.

If you are a doctor, please read this - it's a great guide on how to have a conversation which may be emotionally charged, when you need to break bad news to a patient.

If you are a patient, please share this with your doctor - it will help him to become a better healer !

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