In order to have better results in the therapeutic education of a patient, you should learn to deal with him in a less guiding way, in order to contribute to his "well-being" and to the better compliance, in the frame of an interprofessional practice.
Being adapted "on the counter", favors the pharmacist and highlights his advisory role. It also leads the patient being reassured, as he sees that this approach is in the best interest of his health.
This fact definitely builds trust, especially for chronic patients.
Help the patient with a chronic illness manage his treatment in a better way, encourage him to make the right choices, teach him to manage better the side effects of his medications and comply to his treatment.
Encourage him to exercise a bit, to be hydrated and also take care of his skin ... All these can be learned very easily through a specialized training.
The most positive of all, is that the way you work behind the counter will be very positively affected.
A new bench position to adopt
So, look for the appropriate communication seminars, especially in the form of eLearning, that are interactive, with self-assessment modules, facts that are changing the standards of education.
Of course, the difficult part is when start applying what you have learned and especially respond to the customer in every request that he has, to lead him, if necessary, in a confidential way, to ask him the appropriate inquiry questions and to suggest him first, not products, but tips and benefits for a better management of his health issue.
Only if he is positive in your proposals and only then, you will present him and suggest him specific products with their peculiarities and benefits.
From there on, the acceptance of the product by your customer will be an one-way road!
Avoid some expressions
In addition to your standing way on the bench, be sure to gradually change your vocabulary, especially in some cases.
You often say to a chronic patient, for example, "you will take this medicine in the morning, at noon and in the evening".
This is not an educational attitude towards the patient, but only a guide.
You can replace this sentence with "Please explain to me how do you take your medicines?"
With this way, you will find out his knowledge about his treatment and the level of his compliance with it.
It should be noted, that from surveys 7 in 10 hypertensive patients do not properly comply with their treatment.
Sometimes, when dealing with a woman who has just been diagnosed with breast cancer, you tend to be encouraging and reassuring, because this disease is usually treatable.
In fact, for the patient, it is his "cancer".
As soon as the doctor told him the bad news, his life will change dramatically.
For the point of him, there is no "small" cancer.
You need to delete the expression "take courage!" from your vocabulary.
It does not help at all and the person still leaves with his "weight".
Instead of that fact, she should leave the pharmacy with the idea that you are in touch, that you are there for her… You are the "anchor" to these patients!
Also, for example, when a patient changes treatment, you should adopt a less medical attitude, more focused on adopting it in his daily life.
And when you deal with someone who refuses to take his medicine, or take some prevention treatment (e.g., vaccination), instead of saying "what a pity!", try to understand why is he doing this and what reasons could make him change his mind.
Trust is being built
Patients who are well-educated about their illness, and who are also pharmacy clients, are much more likely to listen to the advice provided by their pharmacist.
They are more receptive, ask questions about details of the disease and also about their treatment (e.g., how does the drug work, how to deal with any side effects… etc.).
This, creates an atmosphere of beneficial trust with their pharmacist.
Even though this is not the only goal, trust is definitely strengthened.
You will find out that patients no longer feel alone with their illness.
They know now, that their pharmacist is a person that they can count on with confidence.
The patient acknowledges that his pharmacist has devoted time to him and that he has a general knowledge of health issues, but above all, he is a specialist in medicine.
With such practices, people will definitely trust you more.
Enhanced interprofessional synergy
With the proper communication practices, trust is also built between health professionals.
Other health professionals, such as doctors, aim for the same result: to improve the patient's health, and there should be no rivalry.
This brings all health professionals closer together, getting to know each other in order to deal with their daily difficulties.
In their own way, pharmaceutical companies are also involved in the training and communication with various professionals.
The sponsorship of training seminars by pharmaceutical companies to pharmacists, contributes to the development of their skills, their knowledge in certain subjects, and their ability to combine them ...
Companies can also fund digital or live support seminars in order to facilitate discussions and exchanging opinions.
These tutorials may not be directly related to just one type of pathology, but may include, for example, seminars on client behavior, communication or the screening and merchandising process.
CONCLUSION: Step by step, the training seminars evolve the daily practice on the pharmacist’s bench.
Let's keep in mind:
1. Pharmacists who attend Patient Therapy Education Programs, and communication practices, take a new approach and talk to patients in a different way.
2. The need for a confidentiality space in the pharmacy increases, the way I "listen to customers" changes, as do the words that are used, in conversations with them.
3. Pharmacists use what they have learned in the seminar always for the benefit of their patient. Associations, pharmaceutical companies and other providers create tools to support them and thus build trust over time.