EFFECTIVE DOCTOR-PATIENT COMMUNICATION A KEY FACTOR FOR ASSESSING PATIENT SATISFACTION WITH DENTAL SERVICES PROVIDED
Keywords:communication, satisfaction, quality of dental services
In recent years, great progress has been made in the communication between dental practitioners and their patients. In the 21 st century, communication has become an essential and necessary clinical skill for every dental professional. Communication skills are a skill that every medical professional must master in order to build the best possible relationships with patients. This includes the ability to form a certain idea about the patient's oral disease, altering the patient's mood (minimizing fear, anxiety, increasing confidence, hope for favorable treatment results), influencing the patient's lifestyle and behavior in order to carry out the recommendations given by the dental specialist treating him. They are described in the scientific literature the different models of the relationship between the doctor and the patient, as well as the research of authors regarding the importance of good communication about the patient's dental treatment procedure satisfaction.
Aim: The present study aims to investigate the impact of efficient communication towards patient satisfaction with the quality of dental services provided.
Materials and methods: Sociological survey has been carried out. For the respondents’ convenience participating in the research, the opportunity to choose between two options for filling out the survey card is provided: a paper survey card and Online questionnaire created in Google Forms. A survey was conducted on a voluntary basis in May-July 2023. The results of the survey are presented in table and graphic form, which are accompanied by analyzes and conclusions. For the purposes of the research, 358 patients treated by fourth, fifth- and sixth year students in the facility of the Faculty of Dental Medicine at the Medical University of Varna - were surveyed.
Results: There is a positive correlation observed from the survey between effective doctor-patient communication and patient satisfaction with the quality of dental services provided. Good communication with the patient strengthens the trust in the dentist and helps the patient anxiety of the upcoming dental manipulations.
Conclusion: Quality dental services are the basis for the success of the diagnostic - treatment process of any dental practice. Communication with the patient and his relatives is the duty of every dentist, which is of great importance for preserving the mental health of the patient. Great attention is paid to the development of communication skills by dental practitioners. According to a number of studies, effective communication with patients is at the heart of the success of any dental practice. Following some basic rules in communication is a key factor in a good relationship between the dentist and the patient.
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