The most frequently used professional skills in the NHS are communication skills.
Effective communication can improve patient satisfaction and compliance with treatment and quality of life.
However, whilst research confirms that they don’t improve without training; most NHS staff have not been taught professional listening skills.
The SAGE & THYME Foundation Level workshop was developed by NHS staff and a patient at University Hospital of South Manchester NHS Foundation Trust (UHSM) to teach professional listening skills based on published evidence.
It employs a blend of learning styles including group discussion, theory and rehearsals of the SAGE & THYME model (S = setting, A = ask, G = gather, E = empathy; T = talk, H = help, Y = you, M = me, E = end).
The workshop is run in just 3 hours for 30 participants with 3 facilitators.
It is suitable for all levels of staff, both clinical and non-clinical.
The evidence behind the SAGE & THYME model is published in the Royal Marsden Manual of Clinical Nursing Procedures.
The SAGE & THYME foundation level workshop now has multiple publications showing that the workshop significantly increases participant knowledge and confidence in their communication skills. Participants are motivated to use the new skills in their practice and the changes in behaviour are sustained two months after the training.
Organisations run the workshop themselves by training up staff to become SAGE & THYME facilitators, obtaining a licence and purchasing delegate packs from UHSM.
The workshop is run in over 60 organisations across the UK (see http://www.sageandthymetraining.org.uk/map-organisations-st-fl-licences) and has been taught to over 60,000 health and social care staff.
Luke Mayer, Community Staff Nurse – Out of Hours, Dudley Group of Hospitals: “I just wanted to pass on my thoughts regarding the model. Firstly, the SAGE & THYME model is, in my opinion, excellent. It has turned my practice upside down when having discussions with my patients and relatives. I like how it has shown me not to rush in with lots of advice and info, but to wait and allow the person I’m talking with to guide what help they need. I also like how it gets to the root of the problem – I now know that the first few things mentioned may not be the worst of their worries at all. It is a model I have now adopted and will continue to use daily.”
Sandra Campbell, Macmillan Nurse Consultant, NHS Forth Valley: “Introducing SAGE & THYME into our organisation has been an extremely valuable process.”
UHSM also runs the 3.5 hour workshop ‘SAGE & THYME for Advance Care Planning’ which teaches more advanced communication skills relating to discussing advance care planning and end of life care with patients and their carers. For further information, please visit: www.sageandthymetraining.org.uk or contact us at [email protected] or 0161 291 4210.