Women's Talk and Nurse-Client Encounters: Developing Criteria for Assessing Interpersonal Skill

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This discussion furnishes a starting point for conducting outcome-process research in nursing with respect to nurse-client interactions. The argument put forth suggests the following: (a) the health care context often presents nurses with problems, the resolution of which requires interpersonal intervention; (b) the conceptualization of nursing action as a process of social interaction with discernible phases can provide a framework for understanding how interpersonal skill may influence the level of competence achieved within a particular encounter; and (c) criteria for assessing a nurse's level of interpersonal skill can be derived from a review of the communication behaviors traditionally associated with women.

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