Barriers to the Enhancement of Effective Communication in Neurosurgery.

TitleBarriers to the Enhancement of Effective Communication in Neurosurgery.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsHartley BR, Elowitz E
JournalWorld Neurosurg
Date Published2020 Jan
KeywordsCommunication, Humans, Neurosurgery, Patient Safety, Patient Satisfaction, Physician-Patient Relations

Communication issues play a major role within neurosurgery. There has been a growing awareness of the necessity of enhanced patient-centered communication between the physician and patient to improve patient satisfaction, compliance, and outcomes. In addition, the threat of malpractice litigation within neurosurgery is of particular concern, and improved communication may lead to some degree of risk mitigation. Within the neurosurgical and medical team, effective transmittal of vital clinical data is essential for patient safety. Despite the recent recognition of the critical role that communication plays in all aspects of medical care, multiple impediments hinder the improvement and use of effective techniques. We have identified 8 unique barriers to the advancement of communication practices: lack of recognition of the importance of communication skills; cognitive bias; sense that it "takes too much time"; cultural hierarchy within medicine; lack of formal communication skill training; fear that disclosure of medical errors will lead to malpractice litigation; the electronic medical record; and frequent shift changes and handoffs.

Alternate JournalWorld Neurosurg
PubMed ID31881581