Is the consultation important to study?

What is there to study in communication?

  1. Content - what we do or need to do - e.g. the traditional medical history
  2. Process - how we do it - communication skills per se
  3. Perceptual - what we are thinking and feeling as we go and how this affects the above two

These three mesh completely together to make a consultation and cannot be studied in isolation.

Are there problems in doctor patient communication?

Yes, in all of the following areas:

Evidence for communication skills being valuable

Many studies now validate specific communication skills as being able to achieve favourable results with all of the above measures- it is not just subjective and no longer can we say that what we arc promoting is just an alternative.

What are the goals of effective communication?

(What is the prize on offer for patients and doctors?)