4 Aug 2022


The 5 Biggest Communication Inhibitors (And How to Overcome Them)

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Academic level: College

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Background Information 

Communication is a crucial in aspect of human interactions because it influences the way meanings are perceived and understood. However, the existing barriers that arise resulting in misunderstanding and misinterpretations affect effective communication. I work in a Healthcare environment as a head nurse where we handle huge data making health care delivery become more complex. Therefore, handling huge data creates more opportunities for communication failure. 

For the past 3 years I have worked closely with my colleagues, I have noticed that various communication obstacles have led to misunderstandings, which have influenced adversely on the effectiveness of health professionals in delivering quality services. Life-threatening faults and errors have been experienced in different methods of communication challenges. For instance, in shift changes where the nurse or doctor hand overs a patient to the next health professional, most times vital information is not passed on. Additionally, some health professional who are very busy fail to keep patient data in writing instead they store it in their minds, which is prone to cause errors. In addition, sometimes the next health provider due to unclear handwriting cannot read the information put in writing. Moreover, sometimes a health professional fails to check the medical record before attending to the patient, which may result in confusion. 

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Communication Inhibitor 

The communication inhibitors that present communication challenges in the healthcare environment include: 

Organizational barrier -involves poor organizational relationships, stringent rules, regulations, climate, culture, inadequate opportunities or facilities of improvement and growth, or complexity. Also, the nature of external and internal environment such as outdated equipment, staff shortage, poor lightening, and large working areas separated physically from each other. 

Language barrier - affects a conversation and is not limited to differences in dialect, accent, vocabulary, and languages. For instance, the use of poorly explained words or difficult language can result in confusion and wrong interpretation. 

Physical Communication Barriers - lead to communication breakdown due physical restrictions or conditions such as distance, environmental discomfort, ignorance of medium, physical disability, noise, and lack of time or remoteness, which causes misunderstanding or confusion. For instance, listeners maybe confused by the noise or uncomfortable conditions. 


Communication  Inhibitor  Analysis 
Inadequate opportunities or facilities for improvement.  Organizational Barrier  The organization lacks adequate facilities such as computers to feed in patient information. This causes some providers to keep information in their minds instead of entering them into the computers. This results to omission and errors. Additionally, lack of training programs to foster continuous learning hinders room for improvement. Since healthcare is becoming more complex due to huge data, it is crucial to train providers so that they are per with the changes taking place. 
Differences in accent and use of vocabulary during communication is a common thing among some doctors when explaining some patient information to the nurse.  Language Barrier  Use of vocabulary and differences in accent can result in miscommunication, misunderstanding, and misinterpretation of information that is critical to healthcare delivery. Any misunderstanding can result in poor quality in service delivery. Therefore, it is important for health providers to use simple language that can be understood by every person in the organization to prevent misunderstanding. 
Health professionals are placed in large working areas separated physically from each other.  Physical Barrier  This creates distance that makes it challenging for a nurse or doctor to access another especially during the time for shift change. Therefore, this leads to confusion such that if the off duty nurse or doctor does not leave behind adequate information, then errors and mistakes is bound to happen thereby affecting delivery of healthcare services. 


I will rank effectiveness of communication in my work place at 85 on a scale of 100. In my workplace, we use language in various instances to connect with people, pass our ideas across, express ourselves, and communicate. The leadership offers a process of communication that fosters effectiveness. 

On a daily basis, I work with colleagues who have different needs, values, and views. Although we communicate well generally, these differences at times lead to communication failures on different levels including personal and organizational. Effective communication determines how well services are delivered to patients, meaning proper communication and understanding is very crucial in ensuring success of the organization and how well the job is done. It is imperative for the organization to identify how well providers are communicating in order to develop better communication. This can be done by reviewing the patient logs to determine how often doctors and nurses fail to pass on information. This is an effective way of identifying the problem areas within healthcare that lead to communication failure. 

The best thing is that the leadership fosters effective communication among colleagues to allow exchange of ideas with others. It is important for leadership to ensure it promotes better communication and understanding among health professionals within the healthcare setting. The organization needs to put in place effective program to ensure adequate information is communicated among health professionals to prevent cases of omissions and mistakes especially during shift changes. It is important for incoming health providers to ask appropriate questions to ensure they are provided with the necessary information required before attending to a patient. In addition, the organization can set up program that would create a standardized routine that each health professional will adhere to when they handover a patient to the next provider. Such a program can have steps and specific goals that address every aspect of the car and condition of a patient. Therefore, streamlining the shift change will help to minimize these challenges thereby reducing harmful medical errors. 


Jain, R. (2008). The barriers to effective communication.  Atharva Institute of . Retrieved from: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Rupal_Jain 

MSG Team. (n.d). Management Study Guide: 10 Barriers to Communication. 

Pandita, R. (2011). Physical Barriers in Communication. 

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StudyBounty. (2023, September 15). The 5 Biggest Communication Inhibitors (And How to Overcome Them).


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