EDUCATION

Communication Skills Faculty

Welcome to the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Palliative and End of Life Communication Skills Faculty.

The importance of effective communication is generally recognised in all health and social care settings and relationships – it is part of everyday practice. It has special significance when caring for people at the end of their lives as conversations about death and dying can be the most challenging of all communication scenarios.

Communication skills faculty

Why communication skills are so essential for end of life care

Evidence shows that poor communication in end of life care can leave individuals feeling distressed, have a negative effect on symptom control and often can lead to complaints about the quality of care. Additionally, insufficient training and lack of confidence when communicating with people in our care and those important to them can contribute to stress, lack of job satisfaction and emotional burnout in health and social care.

Communication Skills Faculty
Communication Skills Faculty

How the communications skills faculty can help you

Research has identified critically essential communications skills for holding such conversations can be very beneficial, and there are many tools and protocols to support difficult conversations. Cornwall & Isles of Scilly End of Life Education Group aspires to establish a robust long-lasting Communications Skills Faculty to ensure all health and social care staff working with patients and their families feel supported and confident and have access to the right level of training and education for their individual needs.

Our ambitions

One of the ambitions for Palliative and End of Life Care which sets a framework for action is that ‘All staff are prepared to care’ aspiring to the vision that patients can confidently state:

‘Wherever I am, health and care staff bring empathy, skills and expertise and give me competent, confident and compassionate care’.

It is recognised that ‘Only well-trained, competent and confident staff can bring professionalism, compassion and skill to the most difficult and intensely delicate physical and psychological caring. It is clear, knowledgeable, responsive and confident professional judgement is the best guarantee of good care’

Our collaborative vision is that through a robust communications skills faculty we can provide a range of training options for a wide range of disciplines, covering all care settings. This will support the End of Life Education strategy and fulfil the appropriate learning outcomes for each staff group, ensuring that education is accessible to all staff in any location and any care setting where End of Life care is delivered.

Communications Skills Faculty Framework

How the communications skills framework works

We have positioned our communications skills framework in 4 levels. It is not necessary to go through each level as it will depend upon your current experience and previous training. But we hope to have something to offer each individual regardless of where you are on your learning journey and the care setting you work in.

Introduction

Intended learner:
Individuals who have responsibility for communicating with a limited range of people on day-to-day matters. Those who are infrequently involved within end of life care, requiring a basic awareness.

Complete E-learning modules:

  • Importance of good communication
  • Principles of good communication
  • Self-awareness in communication

Self-directed study:
Complete the learner resource workbook

Foundation

Intended learner:
Individuals who have responsibility for communicating with a range of people on a range of matters. Those who frequently work within end of life care.

Complete E-learning modules:

  • Importance of good communication
  • Principles of good communication
  • Self-awareness in communication

Self-directed study:
Complete the learner resource workbook

THEN choose face-to-face options as follows:

  • Communication skills in End of life care (2 hours) and/or
  • Sage and Thyme 4 hour workshop and/or
  • Coaching conversations 2 day workshop

Intermediate

Intended learner:
The individual is able to develop and maintain communication with people about difficult matters and/or in difficult situations – those who frequently work within end of life care.

Learning method:

  • Pre-requisition to intermediate training is the completion of foundation training.
  • 1-day full-day training: 2 trained facilitators: 10 – 16 learners per session

Advanced

Intended learner:
The individual is expected to develop and maintain communication with people on complex matters. e.g. specialist palliative care staff, those work is entirely focused on end of life care

Learning method:

  • Pre-requisition to advanced comms training is the completion of intermediate course.
  • 2-day programme: 2 trained facilitators: 10 – 16 learners per session

Communications skills resources for you

Communication Skills Faculty

Raising awareness of communications skills in end of life care

This self-directed workbook can be used as a stand-alone resource or to consolidate knowledge before undertaking taught sessions at the introduction, foundation, intermediate or advanced levels.

It covers the principles of effective communication and includes: mutual respect, listening, giving space, avoiding distractions and interruptions, eye contact, location and privacy.

Communication Skills Faculty

E-Learning modules accessed via eLearning for health

Register for eLearning for health then complete the following modules as minimum criteria.

  • Importance of good communication – this session explains the importance of good communication in the context of end of life care. It covers the principles of good communication, and then the consequences of good and bad communication for patients, families and those working with them.
  • Principles of good communication – this session looks at how you can facilitate good communication – whether you are a patient, a carer or a health or social care professional. It aims to look at the basic things needed to make communication helpful for all those involved.
  • Self-awareness in communication – This session explains the importance of self-awareness and reflection in end of life care.

To access the learning modules, register at e-lfh.org.uk

Communication Skills Faculty

Communications skills in end of life care training course

This 2-hour face-to-face session supports the individual to develop confidence in communications skills and knowledge in relation to end of life care. The session focuses on the following learning outcomes:

  • Understand the importance of good communication in end of life care
  • Understand how to reduce the barriers to effective communication
  • Identify your own communication skills strengths and weaknesses
  • Understand the emotional impact on people and their families who are living with a life-limiting illness and how that influences communication
  • Explore strategies to support effective communication skills in end of life care

Sage & thyme communications workshops

The SAGE & THYME® foundation level workshop (S&T FL) teaches clinical and non-clinical staff at all levels, evidence-based communication skills to provide person-centred support to someone with emotional concerns using the SAGE & THYME model. The SAGE & THYME model is suitable for talking to anyone: patients and carers, students, colleagues and children – inside and outside of health and social care.

Guidance states that all health and social care staff should be able to:

  • Recognise psychological distress
  • Avoid causing psychological harm
  • Communicate honestly and compassionately
  • Know when they have reached the boundary of their competence

The SAGE and THYME foundation level workshop reminds staff how to listen and how to respond in a way which empowers the patient.  It discourages staff from ‘fixing’ and demonstrates how to work with the patient’s own ideas first.  The training is based on research findings on effective communication skills.

The training:

  • Provides evidence based communication skills training to all levels of staff
  • Gives a structured and quick approach for dealing with the concerns of patients and carers
  • Using SAGE & THYME model in clinical practice can empower the patient/carer
  • Significantly increase staff confidence, perceived competence and willingness to talk about concerns
  • Short course – only 3 hours using a mix of small group work, lectures and rehearsals
  • Can be attended by up to 30 people

The SAGE & THYME model can be taught to any member of staff (e.g. healthcare assistants, nurses, allied health professionals, doctors, administrators, students, volunteers) in contact with distressed people (not just patients) and in any setting (e.g. hospital, patient’s home, nursing home, hospice, social care). To book your place please email rachel.lloyd20@nhs.net

Communication Skills Faculty

Coaching conversations training workshop

Coaching skills help to create a culture in which we encourage people to be resourceful. It helps us to work together to find out what motivates people to improve their health and wellbeing.

The coaching conversations accredited training helps you to understand how to use coaching within a clinical or professional role. It shows when and where a coaching approach is effective and how you can use these skills in everyday conversations.

We have designed the workshops to help you to deal with situations that require a behaviour change focus. The training helps professionals to have coaching-oriented conversations with their clients.

Using coaching skills will help focus conversations on what really matters to the individual about their health and to explore what the barriers are to them achieving their desired health outcomes.
Coaching skills will help professionals to support the patient to focus on their own resourcefulness, It will also increase their confidence in managing their health and wellbeing. This, in turn will help people to start to explore how they can change their behaviours to have better health outcomes.

This is a fast-paced, challenging, and interactive workshop. It focuses on skill practice and development. It promotes peer challenge and support to create a community of practice.
To book your place on this 2-day workshop with half day follow-up, please visit NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly website cios.icb.nhs.uk

Communications Skills courses coming soon

Communication Skills Faculty

Intermediate communications skills course

This 1-day course will be available shortly – dates to follow.
Intended learner: The individual can develop and maintain communication with people about difficult matters and/or in difficult situations – those who frequently work within end of life care.

Dame Cecily Saunders with Male Patient

Advanced communications skills course

This 2-day course will be available shortly – dates to follow.
Intended learner: The individual is expected to develop and maintain communication with people on complex matters. e.g. specialist palliative care staff, those work is entirely focused on end of life care.

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