“(…) ogni comunicazione racchiude in se un aspetto di contenuto ed uno di relazione; il primo si esprime con le parole, il secondo si esprime attraverso il linguaggio non verbale o il linguaggio del corpo, mediante il qual vengono fornite informazioni alle informazioni (…)” (Watzlawick, 1971)
One of the basic needs of the person presenting to the ER, is to be understood, not only in the clinical condition (clearly a priority if a matter of life or death), but also on a relational ground.
Customizing the service responds to the need to enter into a relationship with her/him from a holistic point of view. The urgent need is an important subjective factor adding to discomfort and misunderstandings that often occur while waiting in the emergency room.
Between users and the hospital staff there is often a different way to interpret the degree of urgency of a disease or a traumatic event. This discrepancy cannot be understated. The waiting room is managed by the triage nurse, which must be able to face patients’ lamentations for wath they consider an excessively long time to wait for a visit or the response of an examination. In this setting the ability to implement targeted communication techniques would be useful in the management of potential conflicts.
In this study a specifically designed 16 multiple choice questions questionnaire was administered to 39 certified triage nurses at the Emergency Department of the University Hospital of Borgo Trento in Verona, which provides access to a yearly average of about 85,000 patients, in order to test their abilities as communicators.
Given the low number of subjects evaluated it is not possible to drive any definitive conclusion from data analysis but the authors belive that this study may constitute the basis for further research and ongoing improvement. Keywords: Triage, communication, therapeutic relationship, qualitative research, relational aspect.