What’s in a name?

When you present yourself to patients how aware are you of what your name badge says about you?  First impressions count and the way we approach a patient is important not only to convey a sense of professionalism, but also to reassure them that we are approachable ourselves and are here to have a conversation with them and not at them!

  • Is your name badge clearly on display and is the writing large enough for patients to quickly and easily see your name and your job title?
  • Is your job title the right one?  It can be very confusing when you have a name badge that says you are a staff nurse in dermatology outpatients, yet you are approaching the patient with information about a study into heart failure! If this does happen, it may be worth just explaining the discrepancy before you go on.
  • Are you a researcher that has done a PhD?  Does it say Dr on your name badge?  Just be aware of the impression this may give patients if you are approaching them in hospital.  It is quite reasonable for them to assume you are a medical doctor, even if you are not.
  • If you are anything like me, your “First” name may not actually be the name you are known as.  The amount of times I’ve had to explain why it says Anne on my name badge, yet I’ve introduced myself as Emma…

 

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