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« Attitude Can Get You Where You Want To BE | Main | Get A Grip! »

May 15, 2007


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ellen weber

What an interesting meeting meeting this survey would spark Linda and thanks for the link. Wish I could have been there. What results struck you as most beneficial to building a stronger work community?

Linda Curtis

Hi Ellen, these are the best staff meetings we have. Anything that opens a window into each other brings us closer. I think it was surprising to see the amount of insecurity about taking a risk that some deal with. The hygienists have a very one to one relationship with the patients and they don't want to upset them and feel that proposing treatment that they don't want will do that. When I explained that they need to see it and present it as a benefit and let the patient make an informed decision, they had an aha moment. We don't expect them to strongarm anyone, just educate. It was also interesting to see how they let a patients behavior affect them. They took it personally and felt hurt. I explained that it's not about them, it's about the patient and their fears and shame for the condition they've let themselves get in. I suggested listening for clues to find out what was driving their behavior. It really isn't usually about us at all. Being able to commiserate and share experiences really unifies our team. It also gives me an opportunity to address things I'm concerned about in the group without singling anyone out. For instance, I often hear a hygienist say, "You are due for your panorex. I know you don't like x-rays, do you just want to wait till next time? She is giving him his excuse. I was able to suggest, "Dr. Price noticed you are due for your panorex. We need to do that to be sure there are no infections or cysts present in your jaw or roots. Let's do that know so I can start cleaning your teeth." Patients are much more likely to agree because they've received a little education about why they need it and Dr. Price's wishes have been stated. Talking about it in the group ensures that everyone will be on the same page. Sometimes they need to understand that it's ok to state your case and remain silent so the patient can take responsibility for their own decision.

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