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Who You’ll Hear

Kati Kleber, MSN RN – Nurse educator, former cardiac med-surg/stepdown and neurocritical care nurse, author, and speaker.

Communication Tips Patients and Their Support Systems PIN

What You’ll Learn

  • Predictability
  • Educate
  • Confidance
  • Trust

Communication Tips – Patients and Their Support Systems Show Notes

  • Predictability is SO important to decreasing anxiety
    • Someone new constantly coming in, with lord knows what vs. having a general understanding of when people will be by and what they’ll need so they can anticipate this
    • As much as I HATE whiteboards, this do really help with this 
  • Start off right – educate about plan
    • Never assume family member roles – ask, “So who is this you’ve got with you today?” or if the patient is nonverbal, “So can you tell me your relation to ____?”
  • Be confident – they want to feel safe with you
    • Ask for privacy when you need it in a business like tone
    • “We’re going to get ______ all bathed and cleaned up for the day. It would be a great time to take a break and grab some coffee or something from the cafeteria!”
  • Build trust early
    • Follow through on something small
    • Provide predictability
  • Create a team mentality and dissipate the us vs. them thought tendency
    • This will decrease anxiety, and turn it from constant conflict to collaboration
  • Lean into any misunderstandings or when someone appears angry with curiosity, not avoidance.
    • “You seem frustrated. Can you tell me what’s up?”
    • Most people really just want someone to hear them, their concerns, etc. even if there is nothing you can do about it
  • Validate their experience
    • Sometimes you’ll have patients who went through something traumatic right before getting to the hospital (like their loved one having a cardiac arrest)
    • It’s helpful to hold space for this if they share it with you
    • You may also have patients or loved ones that had a close call and ask what to do in a cardiac emergency at home. This is a great comprehensive article of what to do in various emergencies, and features yours truly when discussing cardiac arrest specifically!

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