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CS1 Communicate with children and young people, and those involved in their care

Overview

This standard is about communicating effectively with children and young people, and those involved in their care.  It covers establishing the most effective methods of communication, and enabling children and young people to participate in communication.  The main focus of communication is in relation to the health and well-being of the child or young person.

The standard is relevant to practitioners who deliver services to children and young people.  Practitioners working in this area require specialist communication skills that take account of age-related and other communication needs, and the family and social context of the child or young person.

Users of this standard will need to ensure that practice reflects up to date information and policies.

Version No 1

Knowledge and Understanding

You will need to know and understand:

  1. the legislation which relates to working with children and young people including:
    1. confidentiality and information sharing
    2. the provision of services
    3. children’s rights
    4. anti-discriminatory practice
    5. child protection
  2. the statutory and professional standards and codes of practice for your area of work and how to interpret and apply these
  3. how to manage your responsibilities as a professional with organisational and contractual requirements
  4. the nature, aims, objectives, values, policies and systems of the organisation in which you work
  5. the nature, extent and boundaries of your work role and its relationship to others in your own and other organisations
  6. the roles of other children’s workforce practitioners and how they relate between and across agencies and sectors
  7. the importance of working within your own sphere of competence and when you should refer to others
  8. the ethics concerning consent and confidentiality, and the tensions which may exist between an individual’s rights and the organisation’s responsibility to individuals
  9. legislation and legal processes relating to consent, including capacity issues and consent in childhood
  10. the importance of gaining assent from children and young people who lack capacity to consent
  11. the rights of individuals to make decisions for themselves and to take risks in the context of their own lives
  12. how to deal with issues of confidentiality and who has the right of access to information and images that have been recorded
  13. how to communicate effectively with children and young people, and those involved in their care
  14. the importance and methods of establishing rapport and respectful, trusting relationships with children and young people and those involved in their care
  15. the benefits of day to day contact in establishing effective relationships
  16. the importance of working in a facilitative and enabling way and how to do this
  17. the importance of focusing on the child or young person as an individual
  18. the ways in which those involved in the care of the child or young person should be involved in communication in order to deliver the most effective outcome for the child or young person
  19. the benefits and methods of supporting children and young people and those involved in their care to communicate with each other through a partnership based approach
  20. the ways in which communication can be modified and altered for different needs, contexts and beliefs, including the age, understanding and communication preferences of the child or young person and those involved in their care
  21. the ways in which children and young people communicate by behaviour, as well as through language, and how different forms of behaviour can be interpreted
  22. the effects of environments and contexts on communication (particularly institutional settings)
  23. the normal development of children and young people’s communication skills
  24. child development, including emotional, physical, intellectual, social and moral development, and how these impact on communication with children and young people
  25. how the health status of the child or young person, and the treatment that s/he is receiving, may affect communication
  26. the importance of acknowledging your own feelings, beliefs and values and those of others as part of the communication process
  27. how an individual’s feelings, beliefs and values can affect the communication process
  28. how to avoid the inappropriate impact of your own personal feelings, beliefs and values on communication with the child or young person, and those involved in their care
  29. the importance of taking into account cultural differences as part of the communication process
  30. the range of other practitioners who are available to support communication with children and young people, and those involved on their care
  31. how to work with communication specialists in an effective way
  32. how communication may be misconstrued and the importance of checking understanding
  33. the importance of avoiding the inappropriate use of jargon
  34. local sources of information, advice and support for children and young people, and those involved in their care
  35. what communication is, and the different forms it may take
  36. how to enable children and young people to develop their communication skills and have their own voice
  37. how to inform, involve and help the child or young person to assess different courses of action, understand the consequences of each and, where appropriate, agree next steps.
  38. the importance of not making assumptions about the communication and understanding abilities of children and young people, and those involved in their care
  39. how to communicate with a child who is pre-verbal
  40. the types of communication differences that children and young people may experience
  41. the sources of information available on the communication differences of children and young people
  42. how communication differences affect the communication methods that you use
  43. the range of feelings which people may experience when there are communication differences
  44. the types of communication aids that are used in children’s services
  45. the principles of observation and active listening and their application
  46. the need to reflect back your understanding of what has been communicated
  47. the types of non-verbal cues that people give as part of communication (e.g. facial expression, tone of voice, body language) and the way in which different cultures use and interpret body language in different ways
  48. the reasons why communication may fail to develop or break down
  49. the information which it may be necessary to share with others, and how to make sure that the child or young person and those involved in their care are clear about this
  50. national and local policy and guidelines for individuals’ records, their storage, retrieval and transfer, and confidentiality of information
  51. the information recorded on individuals records; how to access and use this information; and your responsibilities for maintaining records
  52. any national or local common assessment framework for children and young people, and how this helps communication between practitioners

Performance Criteria

You must be able to do the following:

  1. address the child or young person and those involved in their care in a way that shows respect and with due regard to their human rights
  2. ensure that the timing, place and environment are as conducive as possible to effective communication
  3. obtain relevant information on the communication abilities of the child or young person and those involved in their care
  4. agree the purpose of the communication with the child or young person and those involved in their care, and identify their preferred ways of communicating
  5. identify any potential communication differences that exist, and how these will influence your communication methods
  6. recognise when there is the need to involve communication specialists in the process and take the necessary action to arrange this
  7. communicate with the child or young person and those involved in their care, in a way that is appropriate to their age, understanding and preferences
  8. recognise your own feelings, beliefs and values, and how these may affect the communication process
  9. recognise the feelings and wishes of the child or young person and those involved in their care and how this may affect the communication process
  10. demonstrate active listening throughout the communication process
  11. summarise information using different words, phrases or expressions to assist understanding and provide the opportunity for the child or young person and those involved in their care to ask questions
  12. direct the child or young person and those involved in their care to further sources of information, advice or support as appropriate to their needs
  13. support the child or young person and those involved in their care to communicate with each other through a partnership based approach
  14. offer appropriate emotional support whilst communicating with the child or young person and those involved in their care
  15. support children and young people to express their needs and make choices
  16. clarify and confirm with the child or young person and those involved in their care, the information which may have to be shared with others
  17. work with the child or young person and those involved in their care to overcome any communication differences
  18. find ways of improving communication with the child or young person and those involved in their care by adopting a flexible approach, and using augmented communication where necessary
  19. work with communication specialists when required to enable communication to take place
  20. confirm that there is a mutual understanding of any outcomes of the communication process, including the sharing of information with others
  21. recognise when you need help or advice and seek this from appropriate sources
  22. maintain confidentiality and share information in accordance with legal, professional and organisational requirements
  23. produce records and reports that are clear, comprehensive and accurate, and maintain the security and confidentiality of information

Additional Information

This National Occupational Standard was developed by Skills for Health.

This standard links with the following dimension within the NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework (October 2004):

Dimension: Core 1 Communication
CS1 Communicate with children and young people, and those involved in their care
Final version approved June 2010 © copyright Skills For Health
For competence management tools visit tools.skillsforhealth.org.uk
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