A Therapeutic Patient Relationship
Thursday, October 25, 2012
We are always excited to receive guest blogs from our followers. Today's blog is courtesy of Melanie Bowen who wanted to share the importance of quality care for people who are chronically ill. Follow Melanie on Twitter @MelanieLBowen or follow her blog at http://www.mesothelioma.com/blog/authors/melanie/. If you would like to contribute to our blog then please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A therapeutic relationship is defined by the interactions between a nurse and patient that are based on mutual respect and trust. Patients report their health concerns and nurses provide them with treatment solutions and disease management instructions. Patients and their family’s can benefit from the knowledge and compassion of nurses in a working relationship that fosters improved physical and mental health outcomes. Nurses include the entire family, as well as the patient, as equal partners in care.
A Caring Relationship
The therapeutic relationship is developed through effective communication skills and involving the patient in their care as much as possible. Patients may become overwhelmed with the required skills and procedures to manage lifelong chronic conditions. Nurses teach patients how to care for themselves and perform procedures that the patient cannot.
For instance, patients with mesothelioma may be able to feed themselves, but are not strong enough to clear their airway. The nurse is needed to assist them to improve their breathing status and prevent an emergency.
Teaching for Families
Family members are also involved equally in patient care. For long-term illness, families are instructed in complex procedures and the signs and symptoms of potential complications. Medication administration, oxygen applications and medical care coordination are complex and the family benefits from the instructions and assistance of a knowledgeable nurse.
Mental health and Chronic Disease
Nursing care is crucial for the identification of mental health deficits and treatment. Patients may spend long periods of time in an isolated hospital room and endure painful procedures that deplete their brain of “feel good” chemicals and experience depression. Nurses use listening skills and provide patients an outlet to express their fears and concerns. In addition, nurses discuss the possibility of medical treatment with the patient and their physician for severe depression or anxiety.
The Patient-Nurse Relationship
Nursing care includes the goal of the patient achieving harmony in mind, body and spirit. A therapeutic relationship is based on trust, respect and the patient’s needs and strengths. Family members are also treated equally in care and learn from the instructions and knowledge of the nurse.
Chronic disease is complicated and the entire family can gain the skills needed to care for their loved one. Patients with chronic illness can feel safe, confident, and less anxious when involved in a patient-nurse relationship. Find a medical staff that only care but knows how to help and never give up the fight.