In 2003 key players from the Danish health care system made a report called “The patient’s meeting with the health care system - interpersonal relationships - recommendations for communication, participation and Continuity”. The working group consisted among others of The Danish Medical Association, The Council of Danish Nurses and a number of different patient associations.
The purpose of the report was to ensure the quality of the interpersonal relationships in the patient’s meeting with the health care system. In the report there are 20 recommendations to health care professionals, which can be used as guidelines to how we meet and involve patients in their care.
The recommendations are adapted into our daily work, as an inspiration to how we cooperate with the patients. It is very important for us that we meet patients with a friendly, open minded attitude for them to feel safe and free to take part in decisions concerning their care.
We see the patients as partners in their own care. The health care professionals have information about the disease and treatments and know how to help patients in a crisis. The patients, however, have the knowledge on how the disease affects them, how the medicine influences their lives, and how they feel inside. By bringing both sides into the care, we see the patient as a whole person and not just as a disease case.
From the nurse’s perspective this way of thinking may take some extra time in the daily work schedule, but it is worth while when you observe how patients get better physically and mentally, one step at a time, with us by their side.
To ensure that our department continuous develops in accordance with patients’ wishes and needs, we have established a user council consisting of patients, doctors, nurses and representatives from the Danish Rheumatism Association. The participants meet on equal terms and thereby the patients become important collaborators.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared