Communication self-efficacy in optometry: the mediating role of mindfulness

  • Vibeke Sundling Department of optometry and visual science, Faculty of Health Science, University College of Southeast Norway, Kongsberg, Norway
  • Sandra van Dulmen
  • Hilde Eide
Keywords: Optometrists, Communication self-efficacy, Mindfulness, Empathy, Patient-centred care

Abstract

The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between optometry students’ communication self-efficacy and their level of mindfulness and empathy. The study had a cross-sectional design. The sample included qualified optometrists in their first year of the Masters’ degree programme. The students reported level of communication self-efficacy, empathy and mindfulness by responding to three questionnaires: Ammentorp’s Clear-Cut Communication with Patients, Jefferson Scale of Empathy, and Mindful Attention Awareness Scale. Thirty-three students participated. The communication self-efficacy sum score was 111 (95% CI 106 to 116), the empathy sum score was 107 (95% CI 103 to 111) and the mindfulness sum score was 52 (95% CI 103 to 111). There was a significant positive correlation between communication self-efficacy and mindfulness (r = 0.295, n = 29, p = 0.029), but not between communication self-efficacy and empathy. Mindfulness correlates with communication self-efficacy. Mindfulness could therefore be important in training communication skills and could contribute to the effect of communication skills training. Most optometrists provide services in a retail setting, linking person-centred communication and care, evidence-based medicine, product technology and customer service. Further studies should explore how communication self-efficacy, explicit and tactic knowledge, empathy, mindfulness, emotional intelligence, patient satisfaction and customer service relate to communication and patientcentred care.

Author Biography

Vibeke Sundling, Department of optometry and visual science, Faculty of Health Science, University College of Southeast Norway, Kongsberg, Norway

Department of optometry and visual science.

Associate professor

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Published
2016-11-26
Section
Scientific Article