The context of communication between patient and doctor includes the environment where the situation is taking place. It can include the history between the people involved, as well as each person's role in the communication.
For example- an interaction between the dentist and patient may take place in the treatment room. Whether the doctor is standing or sitting is critical to context. If the doctor is behind the patient then the patient is left with only two of the three ways to discern the nuances in the communication. This will hamper your success with the conversation. If the doctor is in front of the patient, then the patient has all three ways of accessing things: words, tone and body language. Understanding context is important, as it is the foundation of the relationship you are building. If there is a history of non-compliance with the patient then the frustration that causes the doctor and team may show in your tone or gestures, hampering your ability to convince the patient of the needed treatment.
The history between the doctor and the patient is critical to the conversation between them. If there is a trusting relationship then the communication is going to look and sound different versus the patient that does not have a good relationship with the doctor. It sets the tone for everything that happens during the visit.
Each person has an individual role during the conversation. Someone is the receiver, while the other person is the communicator. The receiver is the person who is taking the information in, while the communicator is the person delivering the message. The relationship, context, and history will impact the message that is given as well as the message that is received.
Lenora Milligan is a coach consultant with Salt Dental Practice Management.
Original Article published by
Tri-County Dental Society