Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/122938
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Type: Journal article
Title: "How can I help?" Nurse call openings on a cancer helpline and implications for call progressivity
Author: Leydon, G.M.
Ekberg, K.
Drew, P.
Citation: Patient Education and Counseling, 2013; 92(1):23-30
Publisher: Elsevier
Issue Date: 2013
ISSN: 0738-3991
1873-5134
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Geraldine Marie Leydona, Katie Ekberga Paul Drew
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: Helplines are a key service used for information and support by people affected by cancer. Little is known about the process of delivering and seeking cancer related telephone help. METHODS: Using conversation analysis 52 calls between callers and specialist nurses on a major UK cancer helpline are analysed; focusing on the openings of helpline calls by specialist nurses. The helpline involves a triage system from a frontline call-taker to a specialist nurse. RESULTS: The triage system introduces challenges to the interactions for nurses and callers. This paper demonstrates how calls commence, and outlines implications for how they progress. Four key elements to the nurse's initial opening of the call were identified, which together contribute to managing an effective transition from the frontline call-taker to the current call with the specialist cancer nurse. CONCLUSION: The smooth exchange of information and provision of support in a trusted call environment is a critical goal of the cancer helpline; an effective call opening in a triage environment may significantly optimise the possibility of this goal being realised. PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: A simple strategy is recommended to avoid the difficulties identified, a script for how the triaged call openings may be optimally formulated.
Keywords: Health communication; cancer helpline; call openings
Rights: © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
RMID: 1000006935
DOI: 10.1016/j.pec.2013.02.007
Appears in Collections:Medicine publications

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