Date of Report: 03/2003Source: Pacific AETC
Author: Cynthia Carmichael, MD
Description: From The 4th Level, the Pacific AETC newsletter for clinical consultants.
A recent article out of France attempted to delineate the skills necessary on the part of the consultant to produce a successful consultation. A review of the literature, and a series of focus groups found that consultant skills could be divided into Observable Skills and Principles and Attitudes (non-observable skills).
According to the article, observable skills needed by successful consultants should include:
|identifying the reason for the consultation|
|taking into account the referring clinician's characteristics|
|determining the urgency of the request|
|ascertaining additional pertinent information|
|communicating concise and specific recommendations|
Principles and Attitudes (non-observable skills) recommended for successful consultation include:
|mutual respect and co-operation|
|clarifying referring clinician and consultant's respective roles in patient care|
|medical education without condescension|
The article concludes by acknowledging that limited attention is given to teaching consultation skills in medical education. Further questions to explore and recommendations for consultation skill-building are discussed in the article.
Sibert L, Lachkar A, Grise P, et. al. Communication between Consultants and Referring Physicians: A Qualitative Study to Define Learning and Assessment Objectives in a Specialty Residency Program. Teaching and Learning in Medicine, 14(1)15-19.