A healthy relationship between patients and healthcare givers is the binding force that keeps the medical sector in one piece.
While nurses are pivotal in providing care and ensuring a patient is comfortable the minute they get admitted into the hospital without a strong bond, this would not be possible.
As a nurse, you will work at the forefront of the medical sector. Your job is essential in ensuring all details relevant to the patient should reach the doctor with no disruptions.
This is why you cannot neglect to connect with those who come for treatment.
At the same time, your bond with patients will absolve every skepticism they harbor about the healthcare sector. This includes not trusting the doctor, not showing up for their follow-ups, and refusing to take their medicine. So, why is your role paramount in medical facilities? Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Need for Nursing
As a nurse, the job you do ensures patient charts are accurate, with the adequate treatment provided until they are ready for discharge. However, carelessness can cause a medical error.
More than 10% of deaths in the US occur because of a medical mishap. These arise from a faulty diagnosis, mismanaged surgery, or prescribing the wrong pill. Therefore, as a nurse, ensure that doctors provide the best care with your help.
Your education also makes you indispensable. When you pursue a lucrative degree like a masters science nursing, you become autonomous as a healthcare practitioner with a deeper insight into patient care.
As nurses, your help, especially during the global pandemic in providing medical intervention, single-handedly brought up the patient satisfaction rate to 70% in the US.
This allows the hospital to cultivate trust, and a patient’s cooperation during treatment, none of which would be possible with your assistance.
2. The Importance of Nurse-Patient Trust
Trust is the foundation of every successful relationship. Without trust, you have nothing. As a healthcare provider, your patient’s confidence in you will save their life.
Therefore, you cannot bail on the building of your patient’s conviction in you. Here’s why:
- More Open-Ended Communication. When patients are comfortable around you, they will openly express their illness.
This will help you record accurate information on their current health status and fill in the doctor on past treatment. This will help you work with the doctor in designing a suitable diagnostic route.
- Faith In the Treatment. Patients have their reservations about treatment, especially when there are high doses of medication involved and possible surgery.
Most patients also think of expensive diagnostic routes as money-making schemes and refuse to get help if they don’t trust their healthcare provider. However, when you have the patent on your team, they will trust your judgment and agree to try the suggested routes.
- Show Up for Follow-Ups. After treatment, patients must show up for a follow-up. This ensures that their health progresses as anticipated and the patient is faring well.
If you treat a flesh wound, it will also allow you to check for a re-infection, the condition of the stitches, and the wound’s general overview.
It also lets you discuss lab reports like blood work, X-rays, and CT scans to help the patient get better soon.
- Builds A Hospital’s Reputation. Satisfied patients leave a positive review, which is pivotal for your hospital.
This helps the hospital rank higher on Google search pages for specific treatments, helps other patients connect to the facilities, and improves overall state ranking.
A hospital’s reputation is very fragile. One mishap can bury it for a long time, and a set of positive reviews will raise its status.
3. Barriers To Trust
Trust is not handed out on a silver platter; instead, you earn it. No patient is interested in a biased, rude, and abrasive nurse. If you’re not engaging with patients, you forsake bonding with them.
Therefore, if you’re not careful with how you speak, interact or protect patient data, you will find yourself in a dangerous position:
- HIPAA Violations. In the US between 2009 and 2021, over 4,000 healthcare data breaches have led to a direct violation of the code.
Nurses and cities collectively work in the healthcare sector. When one steps out of the line, it rumbles the delicate infrastructure. As a nurse, if you deliberately steal patient data, share it with any unauthorized person, or sell it ahead, you may get sued.
The violation also includes disregarding the patient’s safety and intentionally jeopardizing their health. This shatters a patient’s faith in you and the institute, making them seek help elsewhere.
- Bias Behavior. As a nurse, you cannot exhibit discriminatory behavior towards your patients. This includes fat-shaming them and blaming their deteriorating health on their body without conducting lab tests.
You cannot undermine a culture, shun an ethnicity, or assume that one race has superiority over others. For instance, assuming black women are tolerant to pain and don’t need anesthesia for a painful procedure.
You cannot be an ableist or ageist as a nurse, even if you prefer working with younger patients. These include abrasive behavior such as dismissing an older patient’s complaints and gaslighting them into thinking otherwise.
Extreme cases involve resorting to elderly abuse. In another example, you may not provide optimal help to a disabled patient, assuming they don’t know how to follow instructions because of their impairment.
4. Overcoming Barriers
If you are a prejudiced nurse, you need to focus on fixing your thoughts, behavior, and actions. This will help you repair the delicate relationship you have with your patients:
- Protect Patient Data at All Times. As a nurse, you should ensure that the EHR chart you manage and the hospital database you access is password protected.
You may also enable two-factor authentication. Unless the patient consents to share their information, don’t pass their charts. This will uphold the HIPAA.
- Learn About Cultures. You can only overcome bias in your workplace by learning about culture, heritage, and religions. You should read books, watch documentaries and even converse with your multicultural colleagues.
This will help you develop opinions and restructure how you think about patients. You should also get explicit bias training to prevent future discriminatory thoughts while mending current ones.
- Focus On the Patient’s Medical Chart. With a patient, always refer to their chart and medical history to diagnose. A patient’s weight, ethnicity, and age should be considered a last resort. Also, listen to what disabled patients say and let them guide you about this care.
- Nursing In a Tech World
The field of nursing is also getting incredibly technologically driven. This will help you provide better care for patients and explore the flexibility of your career.
Technology will also improve the trust between patients and help form a deeper bond. Advancement will lead to more 3D printed plans like those put forward by Biozoon to explain complex medical problems.
Building a relationship with your patients takes time and effort, but it is necessary. The connection encourages patients to seek help, communicate their problems and trust your medical expertise.
However, if you neglect this relationship by violating the HIPAA or exercising discriminatory behavior against your patients, you may lose them.
Therefore, you must keep yourself in check and focus on removing your prejudices to take care of patients better.
As technology becomes a cornerstone of the medical sector, a smooth relationship will help you take care of your patients better without any interruptions,