Health and Social Care Level 5

Effective Communication Skills Case Study


The purpose of this essay is to describe an incident which occurred with a patient while
in the clinical placement. This paper will attempt briefly to describe an encounter with a
patient on the ward in terms of the use of effective communication skills. This essay will
also provide two definitions of communication. In addition, this paper will describe how
i used verbal/non verbal and other communication skills on the above encounter as well
as explain what went well and my weaknesses on that occasion. For the purpose of
preserving confidentiality, patients' name will be changed.

Describe incident with patient

My current placement is in a geriatric ward, designed to deliver health care for old age.
Mr. Black is a 64 year old patient diagnosed with personality disorder and paralysis. I
approached Mr. Black after he had called for help. I addressed Mr. Black and asked him
what i could do for him. As he started speaking, i used colloquialism, as Miller (2002)
stated was part of verbal communication, yet i could not understand what he was saying,
although i knew he was from the West Indies since i saw how his daughter looked and
dressed the day before, his speech was not clear, he spoke low, stumbled over the words
and could not articulate the sounds because of the paralysis. Although I asked him to
speak louder so i can understand what he was saying, he continued speaking in an
unclear manner. After few attempt i felt helpless as the patient was not making sense and
there were other patients calling for attention. Suddenly, frustration and distress was
appeared on Mr. Black's face, this indicated the urgency of what he was trying to tell
me. I observed his surrounding area and notice that there was no catheter anywhere near
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Mr. Black's bed although i noticed he always had it around. This indicated that he must
be wearing a pad. As i lifted the blanket off...