Article

Doing diabetes: an evaluation of communication skills and behaviour change training for health professionals

Citation

Swanson V, Gold A & Keen A (2011) Doing diabetes: an evaluation of communication skills and behaviour change training for health professionals. Practical Diabetes International, 28 (3), pp. 119-123a. https://doi.org/10.1002/pdi.1573

Abstract
Good communication skills enhance consultations between health professionals and patients, leading to better patient outcomes and increased satisfaction. Health professionals working in diabetes can find it difficult to understand patients' apparent self-management 'failures', but may lack psychological skills to support efforts at behaviour change. This paper reports on the impact of three-day workshops using evidenced psychological theory as a basis for promoting communication and behaviour change skills in health professionals working in diabetes. Workshops were delivered in seven urban or rural health service areas in Scotland by a multidisciplinary team. Each included three full-day sessions two weeks apart, and used a range of theoretically-underpinned and evidenced teaching and learning methods. Eighty-one health professionals working in diabetes care participated. Pre-and post-evaluations utilised questionnaires with closed and open questions.Participants recorded a significant increase in 'positive' communication and behaviour change techniques and a decrease in 'negative' techniques over the three workshops. Improved communication and behaviour change skills were perceived as having a positive impact on their understanding of patients' motivations and on their own day-to-day practice. In conclusion, communication and behaviour change skills are very important tools for health professionals working in diabetes care. They can be taught effectively in relatively few sessions using theoretically-based and evidenced approaches, and have a perceived benefit in relation to enhancing patient care and professionals' satisfaction with clinical practice

Keywords
communication skills; behaviour change training; health professionals

Journal
Practical Diabetes International: Volume 28, Issue 3

StatusPublished
Publication date30/04/2011
URLhttp://hdl.handle.net/1893/9088
PublisherWiley-Blackwell
ISSN1357-8170