Communication

Lines of communication must remain open for everyone involved. That means in addition to the treatment team you are working with in the program, your primary provider, insurance company and your family should be involved at some level. This is necessary to the overall objectives of the program.

Although there are common goals for the entire team, each team member may focus on specific issues to ensure your goals of improving quality of your life, reducing your sense of suffering, and increasing your level of functioning both physically and emotional. For example, a physical therapist may be focusing on upper body strength, flexibility, and endurance with the general goal to improve physical function. A psychologist may focus on increasing communication skills, recognizing emotions and increasing self-esteem with the goal of improving your overall outlook on your future and well-being. A nurse may address components of a healthy life style, while a physician may attempt to find the medications that will work best for you.

Communication between the team members on a regular basis is a critical part of the overall effectiveness of the efforts. Regular discussions between everyone involved can help you point out areas where more effort in needed or adjustments need to be made to your personal program. All interaction should take into account any language and cultural sensitivities.