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Ward staff should learn from trauma teams about how to communicate, say patients

Trauma patients appreciate communication levels in the emergency department

Communication is key to making trauma patients feel safe in emergency departments and when they move to other wards, research shows.

Barts Health NHS Trust senior clinical research nurse Imogen Skene interviewed 13 adult trauma patients to hear their experience of care in the trust's emergency departments.

The patients were brought in following falls, road accidents and in one case a shooting, Ms Skene told an RCN international research conference in Edinburgh today.

They talked in glowing terms about the communication from the trauma team, but felt unprepared for the drop-off in communication when they moved to other departments.

One patient told her a bit more talk about what was actually the matter and why they were doing what I thought they were going to do would have been beneficial.

Ms Skene added that patients appreciated nurses' different communication styles, whether humour, reassurance and information-sharing.

Communication is key to making trauma patients feel safe in emergency departments and when they move to other wards, research shows.

Barts Health NHS Trust senior clinical research nurse Imogen Skene interviewed 13 adult trauma patients to hear their experience of care in the trust's emergency departments.

The patients were brought in following falls, road accidents and in one case a shooting, Ms Skene told an RCN international research conference in Edinburgh today.

They talked in glowing terms about the communication from the trauma team, but felt unprepared for the drop-off in communication when they moved to other departments.

One patient told her ‘a bit more talk about what was actually the matter and why they were doing what I thought they were going to do’ would have been beneficial.

Ms Skene added that patients appreciated nurses' different communication styles, whether humour, reassurance and information-sharing.

‘They recalled being able to have a laugh with the nurses,’ she said.

One patient expressed gratitude at being talked to throughout the trauma care process and being told not to worry.

‘Obviously the main concern is treating my injuries, but the reassurance is hugely important,’ the patient said.

Ms Skene said: ‘Communication promotes trust in the trauma team and enables the patient to relax. If you can improve communication when the patient starts moving away from the trauma department, it will help make them feel reassured.’

She added that often the patient has to adapt from having a large team of people looking after them to perhaps just one nurse. She said emergency nurses could help pass on the message to ward nurses in other areas that communication is key for patients during their transition.

 

 

 

 

 

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