Whether you’ve been a patient care technician for ages or are just thinking about patient care technician training, you know that communication is an important part of the job. It may not be the only job quality employers look for, but it is certainly the one that sets excellent patient care technicians apart. Read on to learn 3 communication tips for patient care technicians talking to families.
1. Explain slowly and ask if they have questions.
As a patient care technician, you spend a lot of time explaining things to the patient and his or her family. These explanations often come at a time when they may not be able to understand clearly because of the emotions involved. Always take extra time when you are explaining medical diagnoses and procedures to patients and gauge their understanding as you talk. Ask them throughout the discussion if they have any questions and encourage them to take notes. If they don’t have questions, leave a pen and piece of paper and let them know they can write down questions to ask you later.
2. Listen actively.
Listening is an important part of communication. As the family talks, look at them rather than at your notes. Nod your head and restate what they’ve said in your own words to clarify your understanding. One of your most important jobs is setting the patient and his or her family at ease so be patient with them and remember that listening to their concerns is one of your job duties.
3. Leave your concerns at the door.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed when you are working in healthcare. Not only do you have the weight of your own personal life following you around the workplace, but you also have the weight of all of your other patients’ situations. Don’t bring any of that negativity into a patient’s room. If it helps, you may want to pause outside the door and take a deep cleansing breath so that you can focus 100% on the patient and his or her family. This is one of the best ways to prevent yourself from appearing frustrated or nervous.
Learn more about what it takes to become a patient care technician, what they do, and why you should become one. Think you have what it takes? (Of course you do!) Get started on the path to your dream job.