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Research has shown many aspects of health communication that is essential for health professionals such as dentists nurses and pharmacists Topics such as physician-patient relationships culturally competent communication motivational interviewing skills and risk and crisis communication to name just a few are relevant to the practice of patient care Barry Edgman-Levitan 2012 This project is a needs assessment using input from faculty staff members and students from the Nursing Dental and Pharmacy schools This project serves as an assessment to gauge the benefits of adding a health communication minor to SIUE Health Communication encompasses the study and use of communication strategies to inform and influence individual and community decisions that enhance health It links the domains of communication and health and is recognized as a necessary element of efforts to improve personal and public health National Cancer Institute 2008 p 13 There are many reasons why health communication is important According to Healthy People 2020 health communication can improve healthcare quality and safety increase the efficiency of healthcare and public health services improve the public health information infrastructure support care in the community and at home facilitate clinical and consumer decision-making and also build health skills and knowledge p1 For those involved in health communication the overall goal is to use health communication strategies and health information technology to improve population health outcomes and health care quality and to achieve health equity Healthy People 2020 2013 p1Client OrganizationThe Department of Speech Communication The Department of Speech Communication offers a variety of courses to fulfill requirements at the undergraduate and graduate level At the undergraduate level students choose from three areas of emphasis to accompany their major in speech communication These areas are interpersonal communication corporate and organizational communication and public relations Students in business mass communication political science and sociology often choose to minor in Speech Communication SIUE 2014 The graduate program is divided into organizational health and interpersonal communication The Department
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