Print this page Email this page Users Online: 104 | Click here to view old website
Home About us Editorial Board Search Current Issue Archives Submit Article Author Instructions Contact Us Login 
Year : 2004  |  Volume : 17  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 163-171

Effects of a Course on Ophthalmologist Communication Skills: A Pilot Study

Department of Medicine, Surgery and Dentistry, San Paolo Hospital, University of Milan, Italy

Correspondence Address:
Elena Vegni
Chair of Medical Psychology, Department of Medicine, Surgery and Dentistry, San Paolo Hospital, Via di Rudiný` 8, 20142 Milan
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

Rights and PermissionsRights and Permissions

Introduction: Although the issue of communication skills is now considered crucial for ophthalmology, no previous research has discussed training in this field. This study aimed to discuss the effects of a 16 hour communication skills course for ophthalmologists. In particular the study assessed the interest of participants with respect to the topic and the efficacy on participants' communication skills, at least in a laboratory setting. Materials and methods: Eleven ophthalmologists participated in the course. Learner satisfaction was evaluated using a questionnaire with a six-point Likert scale. Course efficacy was assessed by a comparison between communicative behaviour of ophthalmologists in videoed role playing before and immediately after attending the course. Videoed consultations were coded using the Patient Centred Score Sheet (PCSS) and the Roter Interaction Analysis System (RIAS). The Wilcoxon signed rank test was used for statistical analysis. Findings: The course obtained high satisfaction in participants (mean score 5.1). In the post test role playing, patient centredness increased significantly (p<0.01). Furthermore, ophthalmologists improved their competence in using open ended questions (p<0.02), process categories (e.g. orientation statement) (p<0.05) and social communication categories (e.g. personal statement) (p<0.01). Discussion: According to our findings, ophthalmologists did show satisfaction for the course. Results also indicate that the course positively influenced ophthalmologist communication competence, at least in a laboratory setting. After the course, participants became more attentive to patients' psychosocial needs, both in terms of general quality of consultation (patient centredness) and in terms of using specific interpersonal skills. Present results are considered preliminary, and further research is needed with a larger sample and including an evaluation of the effects on ophthalmologists' communication skills in clinical practice.

Print this article     Email this article
 Next article
 Previous article
 Table of Contents

 Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
 Related articles
 Citation Manager
 Access Statistics
 Reader Comments
 Email Alert *
 Add to My List *
 * Requires registration (Free)

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded112    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal