What Kinds of Communication Skills Are Important as an STNA
Communication is a huge part of any job, but it’s especially important for you if you’re planning to be an STNA. Communicating with your patients allows them to know what’s about to happen and allows you to understand what you need to know about their current needs and wants. Proper communication is going to make your job much easier.
Understanding How Communication Works Is Vital
Effective communication is absolutely crucial for every STNA. Being able to correctly and professionally relay information to other people is a huge part of your job. Communication works both ways, though. You’ll also need to be able to accurately understand the information you’re given from other people. During clinical training, you’ll get to try out all of the different types of communication types you’ll need to be using.
An STNA Communicates with Several Groups of People
As an STNA, you’re talking with coworkers, supervisors, patients, and even family members of your patients. You’re likely to use different terminology when you talk with coworkers and supervisors than you would use to talk with patients and their relatives. You’ll need to do things like avoid slang or jargon with patients, for instance, when you’ll be able to use abbreviations with coworkers and supervisors.
Talking with Patients May Require Special Skills
As you’re talking with patients, you’re going to find that they all have different needs. Some may require you to speak a little more slowly and wait for them to process what you’ve said so that they can formulate their replies. You may also have to adjust the volume you’re using if your patients are harder of hearing. Making sure you have eye contact before giving instructions can also be important.
Technology Can Also Play a Part in Effective Communication
There are other types of communication you’ll need to be familiar with as an STNA, though. Patients will use call lights and intercoms to let you know that they need something, so that needs to be a tool you’re able to use. Other systems may be more specialized for the type of facility you’re working in, so you’ll likely learn about a variety of different types of phone and intercom systems during training.
Your training will teach you much of what you need to know as a State Tested Nursing Assistant, including what communicating with patients and other people will be like. You’ll also get practice in putting those skills to use.
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