- Towards a treatment for treatment: on communication between general practitioners and their deaf patients
- The Sign Language Translator and Interpreter
- Volume | Issue number
- 3 | 1
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam Center for Language and Communication (ACLC)
This study investigates the nature and extent of communication problems between hearing physicians and their deaf or hard-of-hearing patients. Thirty-two deaf and hard-of-hearing patients and their general practitioners were asked to fill in questionnaires regarding communication during the consultations. The authors were interested in (i) the physicians’ evaluation of their ability to explain the diagnosis and treatment to the patient; (ii) the patients’ evaluation of the degree to which they understand the information supplied by the physician; and (iii) the rating given by the physicians and patients regarding the quality of communication. They were also interested in factors that might influence the communication. In this context, the authors discuss linguistic and cultural issues and address the role of interpreting services. The results indicate that there are worrying problems in the communication between (general) practitioners and their deaf and hard-of-hearing patients. The nature of these communication problems is comparable to those previously described for the interaction between general practitioners and patients from an ethnic minority group.
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