Nurses are the Backbone of Patient Care: How can we best support their language access needs?

    

Guest blogger Mary Kate Salley is a healthcare veteran with nearly 30 years of executive experience. As the Executive Vice President Operations at InDemand Interpreting, she leads all client-facing service and functions related to interpreting services, leveraging her long history of delivering world class customer service and care throughout the Healthcare industry.

Jean Watson and the Development of Caritas

Nurses play a vital role in healthcare today, and their impact on our nation’s healthcare, our communities, patients and our families is indisputable. Serving as the backbone of patient care, every day nurses are challenged with coordinating medication, meals, hygiene care, discharges and more all while navigating a myriad of logistical hurdles.

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One leader in the field of nursing made a tremendous impact on improving patient care and providing a structure for effectively addressing patient needs. Jean Watson, the founder and director of the Watson Caring Science Institute and distinguished professor emerita and dean emerita at the University of Colorado’s Denver College of Nursing, developed the 10 Caritas Processes following years of research. The word caritas, stemming from Christian love of human kind or charity, goes right to the heart of what Watson passionately believes: “Caring is the essence of nursing.” Watson’s 10 Caritas Processes are considered the essential components of professional nursing practice today.

Providing Nurses with Effective Language Access

Particularly relevant for language access is Watson’s fourth carative factor that articulates the importance of communication with patients:

4 - The development of a helping-trust relationship, which includes congruence, empathy, and warmth. The strongest tool a nurse has is his or her mode of communication, which establishes a rapport with the patient, as well as caring by the nurse. Communication includes verbal and nonverbal communication, as well as listening that connotes empathetic understanding.

Providing compassionate care to patients means understanding them and being able to communicate effectively with a patient in his or her native language. This means that when a nurse is unable to communicate, he or she should have effective solutions available to offer immediate support.

Video remote interpreting (VRI) is one option that can immediately connect nurses, at the point of care, with medically qualified interpreters. VRI provides an option for nurses that does not need to be prescheduled, is one-touch, hands-free and can be used across all clinical environments. It can be used to support all conversations with a patient—from acute care, patient education, medication dosages, regular check-ins, getting dressed and hygiene care to what a patient would like for dinner. The devices and software were developed with nurses’ input, providing the ability to see both verbal and nonverbal forms of communication, enact a privacy screen, conference in a family member or retrieve a clarification from a consulting doctor enables nurses to immediately provide empathetic, compassionate care while aiding in communication. For more information about our VRI services, visit: https://www.indemandinterpreting.com/why-indemand/.

Guest blogger Mary Kate Salley is a healthcare veteran with nearly 30 years of executive experience. As the Executive Vice President Operations at InDemand Interpreting, she leads all client-facing service and functions related to interpreting services, leveraging her long history of delivering world class customer service and care throughout the Healthcare industry.

 

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