How to treat nonverbal patients

Kathy Oxtoby asks how optometrists can communicate effectively with patients who cannot verbally communicate.

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Whether patients communicate verbally or nonverbally, treating them equally is key to effective and equitable optometry services. 

“Everything you offer your patients should be the same, however they communicate,” says Daniel Hardiman-McCartney FCOptom, Clinical Adviser for the College. “Ask yourself this: ‘What do I need to alter to ensure I can provide patients who communicate nonverbally with the same quality of care as the rest of the population?’” 

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