Listen While Others Talk: 4 Tips to Train Your Medical Student Ears
Listening is a very important skill for anyone planning to become a doctor. This skill will help you establish rapport with your patients. It’s also the most effective way to come up with an accurate patient diagnosis. To know what’s really going on with your patients, you need to listen while others talk.
Having great listening skills helps avoid potential lawsuits from patients. You’ll also establish a good reputation with the doctors, nurses, and residents you work for and with in the future. One of the best ways to learn from these medical professionals is by paying close attention to everything they teach you.
Active listening is learned behavior. It requires skill and practice, especially when you’re in medical school studying to become a doctor. You should add learning good listening skills to your list of medical career goals.
Here are four ways to improve the way you listen while others talk as a med student. That way, you’re ready for future face-to-face meetings with your patients:
1. Focus Is Key
Focus on the person speaking to you, whether it’s one of your patients, an intern, resident, doctor, nurse, or other medical professionals. Make sure you’re close enough to clearly see facial expressions because they are also a part of the message.
Keep in mind that communication is also based on body language. So, be sure to focus on both verbal and physical communication.
2. Don’t Interrupt
Don’t interrupt your patient in the middle of what’s being said to come up with answers. Interrupting a patient in need of your medical attention is rude and unprofessional. It’s also counterproductive.
Focus on the words coming out of your patient’s mouth. Don’t assume you know the problem until you’ve heard the full story. You may not see eye to eye on with patients all the time. But disagreeing makes more sense if you’ve listened to the entire scenario first.
3. Eliminate Distractions
While time constraints are inevitable, they should not compromise the medical care you provide. Do not read charts or documents or accept phone calls while your patient is talking to you.
If you foresee this happening, enlist the help of others to make sure your patient’s consultation is distraction-free. In order to provide adequate patient care, you must listen while others talk… and do it attentively.
4. Be Courteous
As a medical student, you’re already working on a reputation that will follow you throughout your career in medicine. So, make sure you’re a courteous listener and talk to others using a respectful tone.
This helps you create a positive reputation now as a student. That way, you build future clientele that’s loyal to you when you become a practicing physician. Learning to listen while others talk gives you a great edge.
Almost Time to Start Your Clinical Rotations?
During the 3rd and 4th years of being a medical student, be ready to start your clinical rotations. This is an exciting time for you as a future doctor. You’ll get to follow residents and physicians at teaching hospitals. That’s where you’ll get access to real live patients and gain hands-on clinical experience.
Rotations are much like interviews for residencies. Do well, and you just might land the residency you’ve been eyeing for a while now.
Get Help Landing a Clinical Placement
But landing a clinical placement is not always as simple as it sounds. There’s a lot of competition out there, especially at some of the most prestigious learning hospitals. Be prepared to stand out in the crowd of med students applying for placements.
MedSmarter offers clinical placement courses in Suwanee, Georgia. These programs have earned a reputation for helping medical students get placed, so they can start their clinical rotations in the US.
Ready to learn what it takes to get clinical rotations? Click the link below to learn more about the MedStarter clinical placement courses in the Atlanta area.