Skip to main content
Dartmouth-Hitchcock logo
Residents In This Section

Interpersonal and Communication Skills

The physician fellow will demonstrate increasing, graduated expertise and competence in the appropriate skills for developing and maintaining relationships with patients, families, colleagues, and teachers.

Specific learning goals include:

  • A high level of dedication to creating and sustaining therapeutic relationships with patients and their families, including:
    • Promptly and appropriately providing patients with test results, as well as returning patient phone calls or accommodating requests to meet
    • The ability to modify interview techniques in response to the patient's demeanor, cultural, and/or religious background and level of competency
    • The ability to explain the general process of any diagnostic test or invasive procedure, with an emphasis on alleviating the patient's fears and apprehensions
    • The ability to explain any complications of therapy in terms the patient and their family can understand
    • The ability to assist patients and their families in decision-making regarding treatment options, end-of-life care, and discharge planning
  • Learning to use effective listening skills, and to elicit and provide information using effective nonverbal, explanatory, questioning, and writing skills. The fellow will learn to gain a patient's trust through behavior that is consistently honest, sensitive and empathic.
  • Working effectively with other professional associates as a member or leader of a healthcare team. In their leadership roles, fellows will learn the importance of showing respect for opinions of other providers through being responsive, reliable, committed, cooperative, and respectful.
  • Writing complete and concise consultation notes.
  • Communicating effectively with colleagues when signing out patients or turning over care to another service. In particular, the physician fellow will learn to make patient presentations that are concise, thoughtful, hypothesis-driven, and appropriately detailed.
Contact Us