A follow-up study of oncology nurses after communications skills training
Duff Ellen Assistant psychologist, Psychology in Health Care, Newcastle General Hospital, Newcastle upon Tyne
Melinda Firth Consultant clinical psychologist, head of clinical service, Psychology in Health Care, Newcastle General Hospital
Karen Barr Trainee clinical psychologist, Newcastle University
Ann Fox Nurse director, North of England Cancer Network, Gateshead
Clear communication is important in consultations between patients and health professionals, and it benefits parties in multiple ways. Although the effectiveness of communication skills training is widely accepted, the factors that may contribute to maintaining skills have not been reported. To explore these factors, all senior cancer health professionals in the North of England Cancer Network who completed advanced communication skills training in 2005 were contacted. They had completed questionnaires designed to assess their confidence in communication skills in different domains immediately before and after training, and were asked to complete the same questionnaires 18 to 24 months after training, along with a communication skills maintenance questionnaire. Analysis of the data showed a strong association between continued use of skills and discussion of communication issues among colleagues with maintenance of confidence in communication skills.
Cancer Nursing Practice. 8, 1,27-31. doi: 10.7748/cnp2009.02.8.1.27.c6839