A 2000 word reflection on one specific conversation where personal communication and interpersonal skills has had a direct impact on the patient's nursing care.

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‘A 2000 word reflection on one specific  where personal communication and interpersonal skills has had a direct impact on the patient's nursing care.

During this assignment I am going to write a reflection, relating to communication and interpersonal skills in clinical practice. Throughout the piece of work I will be maintaining confidentiality at all times by not mentioning the real name of the client, or the trust that I worked in.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) have set out a code of conduct on how to maintain confidentiality within a health care setting. They say that you must treat information about patients and clients as confidential and use it only for the purpose in which it was given. Nursing staff should ensure that clients understand that some information may be made available to other members of the team who are involved in the delivery of care. We as nurses must safeguard against breaches of confidentiality and protect information from improper disclosure at all times (NMC Code of Conduct 2006).

As I am reflecting on an incident that happened whilst I was working out in practice, I will be using a reflective cycle to help me thoroughly describe what happened during the incident, the one I will be using is known as the Gibbs’ Reflective Cycle (Gibbs, 1988).

The incident that I am going to write about involved a gentleman aged 55.  I am going to change the name of the gentleman for confidentiality reasons and therefore will name him Frank.  

Frank was admitted to the ward for rehabilitation due to his condition of Huntington’s disease (HD) which is an inherited disease causing rapid un-coordinated jerking movement of limbs, personality changes and dementia (Waugh & Grant 2010).  He had been admitted to the ward the previous evening and this was my first interaction with him.  Along with another nurse I was assigned to Frank to get him washed, dressed and have breakfast.  I asked Frank if he would like a wash in his bed or if he would like a shower, Frank just looked at me so I smiled and asked him again thinking that he didn’t hear me properly. He responded by mumbling.  Louise, the other nurse I was working with then had to attend to another gentleman so I was left on my own with Frank. Before she walked away she just said to me ‘just give him a wash, I will be back in a few minutes’.  I had never come across anyone suffering with HD and I didn’t know much about the condition so wasn’t sure if he could understand me or not so I didn’t want to just assume that he wanted a wash. I wanted to see if would prefer a shower.  I went on to try to see if he could say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ but with no success.  I then held two pieces of card in front of him one saying ‘yes’ and one saying ‘no’.  I then sat down beside him and spoke slowly and explained to him to try and lift his arm to one of the cards with an answer to if he wanted a shower.  Finally he responded and managed to touch to the card saying ‘yes’ and gave me a smile.

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I knew as my role as a student nurse I had to do everything possible to make Frank comfortable and it was also in his best interest to have a wash or shower and most importantly I wanted him to have the choice and able to make an informed decision about his care and for him to be able to express himself and for him not to feel intimidated in any way.

Initially I found the situation very frustrating as I just wanted an answer from Frank but then the feeling changed to empathy towards him as how must ...

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