Effective communication in clinical practice

Without communication, it will be impossible for survival. Both verbal and non-verbal communications are integral in life for transfer of information and establishing relations. Human beings are naturally social, hence; communication helps to promote this aspect. Communication is a universal tool in terms of cementing relationships, organizations, families, and other institutions. Considering communication is a natural action that is involuntary, people tend to overlook its importance. This observation is also evident in the health care setting, especially in nursing practice, which focuses on the health needs more. Nursing practitioners pay more attention to the biopsychosocial and spiritual needs of a patient. Nursing practice is not just about scientific knowledge and other practical skills but also having effective interpersonal communication.

Statement of the problem

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Effective communication is a building block in patient care where it determines the response of the patients. The level and manner of communication determine the impression that both parties have on each other. As such, where there is good communication there tends to be great satisfaction in patient health outcome.

Purpose of study

This study purports to shed light on the significance of effective communication in a clinical setting with the aim of enhancing quality care.The main goal when it comes to clinical practice is to provide quality healthcare (Ryan& Butler, 1996). Effective interpersonal and communication skills are also effective tools for improving patients’ satisfaction, collaboration, as well as overall health outcome. According to Gluyas (2015), patients tend to connect with their healthcare providers through good communication. Accordingly, the level and manner of communication determine the impression that both parties have on each other. Through communication, nurses are able to influence their patients’ trust and affect recovery outcome (Bowles, Mackintosh & Torn, 2001).

Communication is the exchange of information, thoughts, and feelings from one person to another. As such, it is a contributing aspect of nursing care. It is a medium used to convey information in the context of care. Nurses relate with their patients through speaking and actions. Depending on the context, communication may be verbal or non-verbal. As human beings, our survival relies on how, what, why, and where put in communication. People relate according to how they state their words, what they really mean, and such. Therefore, how one acts and speaks can be life-changing. There is evidence showing the impact of the manner of communication in a healthcare setting. Therefore, it can be detrimental to both patients and nurses. If people use communication well, they are able to have a clear, accurate, and consistent relationship as well as easy nursing service.

Significance of study

This study reveals how effective communication between nurses and the patience boosts quality care. According to research, patients’ satisfaction and the protection of nurses rely on the context of communication. (Anderson, DeVellis & DeVellis, 1987) For example, for a nurse to understand the physical realm, cultural values, social, and psychology of a patient, there needs to be effective communication. It is common to find that at times the message is not clear due to miscommunication. Therefore, decoding messages rely on both individual issues and internal perceptions. It implies that the recipient’s way of interpretation may not be at par with the sender. In the nursing profession, the main argument is that nurses are the ones responsible for using their voices to talk on behalf of the sick people under their care. In most clinical settings, the patients may not be in a position to speak for themselves due to the fact that they lack communications skills. 

As stated earlier, everyone communicates whether it is verbally or non-verbally. Therefore, communication is central to human behavior. Communication is significant because it has content and value for people to interact (Gluyas, 2015). For communication to be effective and productive, the focus should be on its core when it comes to nursing. The relationship between nurses and patients is all about how the two parties interact. When there is a breakdown in communication pattern, both the nurse and the patient will not recognize the most important aspects when it comes to healthcare (Foronda, MacWilliams, & McArthur, 2016). Often, negative generalizations come and ill attitude comes because of ineffective communication.

 By laying out good communication channels, it helps to avoid lack of direction (Williams, Ilten, & Bower, 2016). The fact that it is a two-way dialogue requires the parties involved to be aware of the interchange of information. However, not all people have the idea of how important it is to have effective communication. It is advisable that when people engage in dialogue, they also practice in active listening skills (McCabe, 2004). This gives each person time to ask and communicate what they feel about the situation at hand with minimum or no interruption at all. People involved can also choose to seek clarity and interchange information. Therefore, effective communication is one that the sender and the receiver are both in sync.

In nursing practice, there are many roles for nurses that require them to have effective skills to communicate efficiently (Sprangers, Dijkstra & Romijn-Luijten, 2015). As stated earlier, the main goal in a clinical setting is to provide quality healthcare and maintain life. For this to happen there should be no miscommunication, which can lead to accidents and incidents. Nurses assume a leadership role for the most vulnerable and those in conditions that prevent them from being self-sufficient. According to a study by Foronda et al. (2016), caring and nursing go hand in hand. This definition of nursing is a reflection of how communication is an integral part of nursing when it comes to quality care. As such, the suggestion is that more emphasis is put on developing effective communication practices for the sake of patient-centered practices. These practices are paramount in ensuring that there is improved care satisfaction for the patients.


Communication is an integral part of human survival. Despite nursing being a scientific method of practicing and implementing nursing care, it is only possible through dialogue, the environment, as well as specific verbal and non-verbal communication. The relationship between a nurse and a patient thrives through a therapeutic form of communication. Without it, it is difficult for nurses to deliver quality health care for their patients. The emphasis that this paper puts on effective communication stems from the fact that it helps to place the needs of the patients on the top by giving them a priority. With good communication, nurses ensure that they are responsible for establishing and maintaining boundaries with patients despite their behavior. It is safe to state that effective communication creates open a portal for Nurse Practitioners to understand their patients. As a result, effective communication helps to reduce the inequalities experienced during nurse-patient interaction. Patients tend to rely on the way they relate with the nurses. On the other hand, it is up to the nurses to provide a safe and effective channel for communication. At the end of the day, open communication promotes quality health care, which is the main goal in nurse practice.


Anderson, L. A., DeVellis, B. M., & DeVellis, R. F. (1987). Effects of modeling on patient 

communication, satisfaction, and knowledge. Medical Care, 1044-1056.

Bowles, N., Mackintosh, C., & Torn, A. (2001). Nurses’ communication skills: An evaluation of 

the impact of solution‐focused communication training. Journal of Advanced Nursing36(3), 347-354.

Foronda, C., MacWilliams, B., & McArthur, E. (2016). Interprofessional communication in 

healthcare: An integrative review. Nurse education in practice19, 36-40.

Gluyas, H. (2015). Effective communication and teamwork promote patient safety. Nursing 

Standard (2014+)29(49), 50.

McCabe, C. (2004). Nurse–patient communication: an exploration of patients’ 

experiences. Journal of clinical nursing13(1), 41-49.

Ryan, E. B., & Butler, R. N. (1996). Communication, aging, and health: Toward understanding 

health provider relationships with older clients. Health Communication8(3), 191-197.

Sprangers, S., Dijkstra, K., & Romijn-Luijten, A. (2015). Communication skills training in a 

nursing home: effects of a brief intervention on residents and nursing aides. Clinical interventions in aging10, 311.

Williams, K. N., Ilten, T. B., & Bower, H. (2016). Meeting communication needs: topics of talk in the nursing home. Journal of Psychosocial Nursing and Mental Health Services43(7), 38-45.

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