provides a very specific answer to a very specific question
focused and seeks a particular answer; usually requires elicits only a "yes" or "no" or one- to two-word answer
allows the patient to elaborate freely; useful in assessing feelings; elicits the patients thoughts without influencing the response
does not require a specific answer and cannot be answered by "yes," "no," or a one-word response; usually begins with words like "how," "what," "can you tell me about," "in what way"
lets the patient know if the nurse heard what was said; encourages the patient to offer additional information
repeating to the patient what the nurse believes to be the main point that the patient is trying to communicate; tone of voice rises slightly at the end of the phrase as if asking a question
verifies that the nurse's interpretation of the message is correct
restatement of the patient's message in the nurse's own words
allows the patient to verify that the message received is accurate; particularly useful when the message is ambiguous or not easily understood
seeks to understand the patient's message by asking for more information or for elaboration on a point; expressed as a question or statement followed by a restatement or paraphrasing of part of the patient's message
allows the nurse to gather more specific information when the patient's message is too vague; focuses on specific data
the nurse encourages the patient to select one topic over another as the primary focus of discussion
promotes independent decision making; allows the patient to see that her or his ideas and thoughts are important
assists the patient to reflect on inner feelings and thoughts rather than seeking answers and advice from another
allows for clarification of the intended message when verbal cues do not match nonverbal cues; allows for more accurate interpretation of patient concerns
the nurse makes observations of the patient during an interaction and communicates these observations back to the patient
useful for patient teaching; promotes informed decision making
nurse provides the patient with relevant data and asks for feedback to determine the patient's level of understanding
focuses on key issues and allows for additional information that was perhaps omitted; particularly useful when interaction has been lengthy or has covered several topics
concise review of main ideas from a discussion
how old are you?
how many children do you have?
Have you had a tetanus shot in the past 5yrs?
how do you feel about having surgery tomorrow?
What concerns do you have about going home?
How are these symptoms different from the last time you were ill?