When delivering information to a patient, the following must be considered1:
- the patient’s physical, visual and cognitive capacities that may affect their ability to understand the information, make decisions or provide consent.
- the most appropriate way to communicate potentially sensitive information (e.g. about sexually transmitted infections, blood-borne viruses and pregnancy results).
- the patient’s cultural and linguistic background (e.g. you may need to use an interpreter to check that the patient understands everything that you have told them).
- the patient’s family members who are involved in their care (with consent of the patient where the patient has capacity).
- the patient’s level of health literacy and therefore their ability to understand the information.
- managing the amount of information you give to avoid overwhelming them.
Reference: Criterion C1.3 – Informed patient decisions._____________
1The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners. Standards for general practices. 5th edn. East Melbourne, Vic: RACGP, 2019. Standards 5th edition [online]. Available at: https://www.racgp.org.au/5thedition/Standards-for-general-practice-5th-edition.pdf. [Accessed July 2020]