Communication is the way of communicating to give information to a person or a machine. In this piece, it will include the types of communication needed for people to give information to another person, or even to inform them of things that are important. As well as communication needed in care setting, barriers to communication, different forms of communication, effective communication and legislation in communication.
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There are a few key issues within communication would be the lack of communication in important moments, such as multi agency work. Multi agency work is when lots of different groups of people come together from lots of different professions, such as health, police, social services and education. They come together so that they can work out how to help an individual in a situation, normally a child or children. Multi-agency working was brought together after case involving a child went badly wrong because professionals weren’t relaying info ration to one another and therefore, no information was getting through to other professionals in these cases. This would show that the communication they were using was not affective and was not working, so therefore they needed to change their ways on how they communicated and therefore come up with a better way that is more effective. This is also when the Children’s Act 2004 came into place. The Children’s act 2004 is ‘improve and integrate children’s services, promote early intervention, provide strong leadership and bring together different professionals in multi-disciplinary teams in order achieve positive outcomes for children and young people and their families.’
Another key issue in communication is confidentiality. Confidentiality is the protection of personal information, which would be a healthcare professional keeping a patient records between them and their colleagues and not telling the patients information to anyone outside the work place or anyone unnecessarily. This information that is discussed is private to the patient and they put their trust in the healthcare professional to not tell anyone that doesn’t need to know.
Confidentiality ensures that individuals’ information is handled in the correct way, otherwise this could cause distress to an individual. It is also crucial for someone to keep another person’s information private because, you never know what is going on with their home life, if information is not handled correctly or sorted out correctly, things might be missed, such as identifying that someone is being abused. This is also another big reason why confidentiality is very important. Information not being used correctly could endanger someone, such as if the individual’s abuser was notified that the individual had gone to see someone and then the professional had told the abuser (breaking confidentiality) there could be bad very consequences for the individual.
Confidentiality is also used outside the care setting, its used in schools. This is mostly used in ways such as school pickups and keeping children’s private information safe. School staff would normally do this by getting conformation from the parents on who is picking up their child and sometimes must give a password to a member of staff, set by the parent/ parents. This can also be done by the parent ringing the school to let them know who is picking up their child, but the password would still be in place. The school would keep a child’s information safe by many ways. Such as, in a locked cabinet, on a secure computer with passwords, or a filing cabinet locket by key.
Another key issue to communication would be language. This can be anything from a disability that stops someone being able to communicate, to English not being someone’s first language, or the type of language someone will use such as slang. A disability or learning difficulties can stop or prevent someone communicating in several ways, such as not being able to process information that is being said to them. This can be very difficult because the person that is speaking to the other person with the disability, may not know they have that disability. There is a condition like this called Aphasia. ‘Aphasia is when a person has difficulty with their language or speech. It’s usually caused by damage to the left side of the brain (for example, after a stroke).’
English not being an individuals first language can cause a few problems such as, not understanding one another, getting confused about what one another is talking about, and just generally getting confused and not understanding many things. But there is many ways around this issue such as, using a translator (electronic or human), using body language to describe certain things or objects, using gestures to show or describe items, facial expressions to show emotions, drawing things or miming.
Homelessness can also be an issue in language barriers, this is because homelessness can lead to people not communicating with one another because they judge their situation and where they live, instead of seeing what the person is really like and what they have gone through. This can cause a few problems because this can cause someone who is homeless to not have any contact with anyone and cause them to be socially isolated.
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There is also another factor that can affect communication, that being mental health. Mental health can be difficult because mental health can be a variety of things, such as autism, depression and anxiety, mood swings and not being able to cope with certain things. Depression and anxiety can make it hard for an individual to communicate, depending on how bad their situation is. Its difficult for individuals with depression to talk to others sometimes, because they may feel like there going to be judged and worry about how the other person may react to what they say, it can also be that the individual that is suffering with depression may feel that they are not good enough to speak to who ever they are having a conversation with, therefore lowering their self-confidence. Anxiety may make an individual to shy or even make them nervous to speak to people. But more importantly, it may make individuals too nervous to go out by themselves, or even do anything by themselves. Therefore, they may struggle to communicate with others because they may not be able to leave the house alone or let alone at all, so they will also become socially isolated because they aren’t communicating with others or even seeing other people. Mood changes can affect communication in several ways, such as an individual being unapproachable because of their mood/ mood swings. This can affect someone’s communication because no one wants to talk to someone who is difficult and unapproachable and that is unpredictable. But some people deal with Individuals like this, and help is available for them, such as mental health specialists. A mental health condition that may affect someone’s mood swings and make their mood unpredictable, would be Bipolar disorder ‘People with bipolar disorder have periods or episodes of depression when they are feeling very low and lethargic and mania – feeling very high and overactive (less severe mania is known as hypomania)’
There are two theories in communication being Bruce Tuckman’s stages of communication, and Michael Argyles communication cycle. Tuckman came up with the idea of; forming, storming, norming and performing. Forming is deciding what you want to be, storming is who you like or who you do not like, norming is when you become normal for that group and fit in, and finally performing is when you are at your best and can communicate well. This theory of communication could be typically used for job interviews, when the employer is choosing candidates suitable for the job. They want to make sure that a candidate can work within a team and that they are suitable for the role that is needed. in this kind of scenario, forming would be the selection of candidates and meeting them, storming would be seeing what individuals are like and if the employer likes them and how they work, norming would be putting candidates together and seeing how they work within a team setting, and performing would be when people in their selected groups work there physically best and can do the best job that they do.
Argyles communication cycle is ‘Interpersonal communication was a skill that could be learnt and developed the same way you learn to drive. You are constantly watching what is happening, working out how to respond and responding, then repeating this cycle.’ This communication cycle is how the brain processes communication. This is shown through this cycle, which being, the idea occurs – thinking that your going to say something, message coded whether the communication is going to be verbal or electronic or written, sending message – saying something verbally or electronically or written, message received – the message has got to the person, message decoded – making sense of the message and working out what has been said, message understood – showing body language or eye contact to an individual showing that you understand, and feedback sent – replying to the message that has been sent.
- What is Aphasia? NHS choices 2018 [online article] (date accessed 1/1/19) available at – https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Aphasia/
- What is Bipolar Disorder? NHS Choices 2016 [online article] (date accessed 1/1/19) available at – https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/bipolar-disorder/
- What is Michael Argyles communication cycle? 2015 [online article] (date accessed 2/1/19) available at –http://btechealthandsocialcare.blogspot.com/2015/12/argyles-theory.html
- What is the Children’s act 2004? [online article] (date accessed 2/1/19) available at – http://www.gpnotebook.co.uk/simplepage.cfm?ID=x20081105191738749131
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