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UMFK nursing division hosts communication skills and conflict workshops for faculty and students

January 23, 2004


The University of Maine at Fort Kent division of nursing is conducting a half day workshop on "Clinician-Patient Communication to Enhance Health Outcomes" for the nursing faculty and junior and senior nursing students on Friday, January 30 at 8:00 a.m. in the Nadeau Hall Teleconference Room.

Clinician-patient communication underlies successful medical care. Until recently, medical training paid little attention to the development of communications. The average clinician may perform 150,000 patient interviews during their medical career, however many of these interviews may not be conducted in a way that enhances health outcomes.

The workshop, presented by the Bayer Institute for Health Care Communication, is a fast paced interactive program designed to provide participants with opportunities to practice skills and techniques, not simply hear about them. It focuses on core communication skills needed by any clinician in any medical specialty.

Participants will have the opportunity to practice a model of four key communication skills as they work individually and in teams. In addition the workshop presents critical research findings that demonstrate effective communication can improve health outcomes, enhance patient and clinician satisfaction, improve adherence to treatments and decrease malpractice claims.

"Communication is the cornerstone of the nurse-patient relationship," said Erin Soucy, nursing resource center manager. "The division of nursing tries to provide learning opportunities for nursing students that will enable them to effectively meet the challenges of their chosen profession and to provide the best care possible to their patients."

A second workshop entitled "Surviving Conflict in Healthcare" will take place in the afternoon after the lunch break.

Also an interactive session, the workshop will review and discuss five types of conflict strategies, make the conflict strategies for the clinician easy to understand and use, and demonstrate when and how to use them in the workplace or anywhere. Participants will learn the important difference between "positions" and "interests" and that conflict resolution means more that just getting what you want.

The session will also help participants identify their personal style of conflict resolution, how to define conflict, and how to decide when to use the conflict strategies.

Tom Saladino, director of Community Voices, a coalition formed to reduce substance abuse among youth, will be the presenter for both workshops.

He held the positions of administrative director of radiology and EEG at New Britain General Hospital, and administrative resident at Yale New Haven Hospital, both in Connecticut

Saladino received his master's degree in health care administration from Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Connecticut. He is also certified in human resources and management from the American Management Association at the University of Maine at Presque Isle.

He is currently a faculty member of MSAD27 Adult Education, and a certified faculty member of the Bayer Institute for Healthcare Communication. He facilitates various interactive programs for businesses and healthcare organizations.