Workshops offered (by request with a minumum registration) by the Communication Skills Program at Dalhousie University's Faculty of Medicine include:
Giving Effective Feedback
Feedback is central to the teaching-learning process as it plays an unequivocal role in guiding and ensuring that learners acquire the necessary knowledge, clinical skill and professional attitudes for competent practice. The focus of this workshop is to work with participants to enhance their skill of giving feedback and supporting learners to seek feedback. This is accomplished through didactic presentation that introduces principles of feedback and adult education, discussion of challenges and clinical contexts, and case-based practice that employs specific feedback skills and strategies.
Working With the Challenging Learner
The learner in difficulty poses significant challenges for clinicians in their role as teachers. This workshop builds on the “Giving Effective Feedback” workshop and introduces participants to additional information and skills that will enable them to apply a systematic framework to identify learner difficulties and the steps involved in developing an intervention to assist the learner in difficulty. The format of this workshop includes didactic presentation, discussion, small group work, and feedback skills practice.
Difficult Patient-Doctor Communication: Working With Clinical Experience
This workshop provides training to participants on how to deal with challenging patient doctor communication – breaking bad news, handling anger, end of life care and many other difficult medical conversations. The small group education process known as Agenda-led Outcome-based Analysis (ALOBA) is employed to discuss and role play real life situations that participants have encountered in their clinical experience, practicing new techniques to enhance their communication skills. These workshops are given to Med 3 students, residents and tutors.
The Three C’s of Interprofessional Team Work: Communication, Collaboration and Conflict Management
This skill building workshop is designed to enhance the ability of participants to communicate effectively with members of an interprofessional health care team. Through didactic presentation and group discussion, participants review factors that contribute to inter-professional team functioning, increase their knowledge of the roles of health care team members and analyze personal, social, professional and institutional factors that contribute to conflict within teams. In case based practice, participants have the opportunity to apply strategies to resolve the inevitable conflict that arise on a day to day basis.
DisclosIng Adverse Events
The disclosure of unanticipated outcomes is a skilled conversation with much at stake for patients and physicians. With the shift to a patient-centred focus, disclosing adverse events and apologizing to patients has become an ethical, legal and professional obligation. The literature highlights the high prevalence of harmful medical errors and the desire of patients to be informed when they are injured by care, especially care gone wrong. In response, open and honest disclosure is increasingly acknowledged to be a core component of quality health care. Despite this recognition, lack of training regarding what and how to disclose constitutes a significant barrier to physicians engaging in these important conversations. That residents are witnessing and disclosing adverse events points to the need to develop educational programs targeting all levels of medical education. This presentation focuses on Dalhousie’s PAMAP Model for Disclosing Adverse Events to assist in this endeavor. This model has been developed by our Communication Skills Program and is being used in communication workshops with residents.
Talking with Patients: Sharing Stories and Strategies
This two-part CME communication skills workshop assists physicians and residents in dealing with present or ongoing communication challenges in their practices. It is designed for faculty, residents, and community and hospital physicians wishing to enhance their communication skills.