Health | The World, Australia, Asia, East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, The Pacific

17 February 2022

On this episode of Policy Forum Pod, Maria Dahm and Carmel Crock join us to discuss the importance of communication in reaching a correct diagnosis.

Diagnostic error is a major issue in Australia, with up to 140,000 people experiencing it every year. But according to new research, the key to changing may not simply be improving doctors’ understanding of disease, but actually improving communication between health professionals and patients. So could improving communication actually reduce stress and burnout in the health workforce? And how can the health system and policymakers better respond to these issues? On this episode of Policy Forum Pod, Dr Mary Dahm from The Australian National University (ANU) and Associate Professor Carmel Crock from the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital and the University of Melbourne join us to discuss how to improve the diagnostic process in Australia. Listen here:

Maria Dahm is Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Communication in Health Care at The Australian National University and an Honorary Research Fellow at the Centre for Health Systems and Safety Research at Macquarie University.

Carmel Crock OAM is Emergency Department Director at The Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, Chair of the Quality and Patient Safety Committee of the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine, and Chair of the Australia and New Zealand affiliate of the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine.

Sharon Bessell is Professor of Public Policy and Director of Gender Equity and Diversity at Crawford School of Public Policy at ANU.

Arnagretta Hunter is the Human Futures Fellow at ANU College of Health and Medicine, a cardiologist, physician, and a Senior Clinical Lecturer at ANU Medical School.

Show notes | The following were mentioned during this episode:

‘Diagnostic statements: a linguistic analysis of how clinicians communicate diagnosis’, Diagnosis, Maria R Dahm and Carmel Crock (2021)

‘‘More than words’ – Interpersonal communication, cognitive bias and diagnostic errors’, Patient Education and Counselling, Maria R Dahm, Maureen Williams and Carmel Crock (2022)

Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine

ANZA-SIDM Improving Diagnosis Conference, taking place virtually on 28-29 April 2022

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