SAQA All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.
SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Use communication skills to establish and maintain supportive relationships 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
252098  Use communication skills to establish and maintain supportive relationships 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Nursing 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 09 - Health Sciences and Social Services Preventive Health 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
REGISTRATION STATUS REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE SAQA DECISION NUMBER
Reregistered  2018-07-01  2023-06-30  SAQA 06120/18 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2024-06-30   2027-06-30  

In all of the tables in this document, both the pre-2009 NQF Level and the NQF Level is shown. In the text (purpose statements, qualification rules, etc), any references to NQF Levels are to the pre-2009 levels unless specifically stated otherwise.  

This unit standard does not replace any other unit standard and is not replaced by any other unit standard. 

PURPOSE OF THE UNIT STANDARD 
People credited with this unit standard are able to:
  • Establish a supportive relationship with healthcare users.
  • Utilise communication skills to empower healthcare users to participate in treatment and care.
  • Deal effectively with feelings and emotions of a healthcare user. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    The credit calculation is based on the assumption that learners are already competent in terms of the following outcomes or areas of learning when starting to learn towards this unit standard:
  • Communication and Maths Literacy skills at NQF Level 4.
  • Social skills at an interpersonal level (basic norms). 

  • UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    Specific range statements are provided in the body of the unit standard where they apply to particular specific outcomes or assessment criteria. 

    Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Establish a supportive relationship with healthcare users. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The key elements of verbal and non-verbal communication are identified and explained in terms of their features and differences. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Elements of verbal communication include:
  • Register and vocabulary, active listening, reflective listening, ability to reflect before speaking; empathy; problem solving; assertiveness.

    Elements of non-verbal communication include:
  • Appropriate use of tone, body language, gestures.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The importance of congruence between verbal and non-verbal communications is explained with reference to relationship building in a health care context. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The role of communication in relationship building is described with reference to its importance for the supportive aspects of relationship, as well as the self-worth of the patient. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Impact includes implications for: security, dignity, warmth, non-discrimination, respect.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The nurse's role and function in supportive relationships, and any legal responsibilities of the service provider, are clarified in accordance with current legislation and ethical codes of practice. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Clarification includes: limits of their role, function, and competence; when to seek advice or refer on to others.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    Protocols for the nurse-patient relationship are established and maintained in accordance with current legislation and ethical codes of practice. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 6 
    Communication and interpersonal skills are used to initiate, develop and maintain a caring, supportive relationship with health care users. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Utilise communication skills to empower healthcare users to participate in treatment and care. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Information given to health care users is clear, concise and presented in a manner appropriate to their development, abilities and receptiveness. Opportunity is provided for questions of clarification. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Information communicated to health care users in response to questions, requests and problems is consistently relevant, accurate and comprehensive with respect to their health status. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Communication includes:
  • Written and verbal.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Communication is carried out in a manner that acknowledges and empowers health care users, and promotes the likelihood of their taking responsibility for their own care. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Manner includes:
  • Respect for individual and their rights; recognition and acknowledgement; considering the view of the healthcare user; facilitate problem solving; age appropriateness.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Available information technology is used in line with its purpose and design. Use of the technology enhances the presentation of information and facilitates the transfer of information on their health status to health care users. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    Information communicated is accurate and reflects an awareness of developments and local applications in the field of health technology. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 6 
    Access is provided to relevant information about legislation, regulations, policies and additional support and services, at a level appropriate to the patient's development, abilities and receptiveness. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Deal effectively with feelings and emotions of a healthcare user. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Expression of feelings is accommodated and accepted in the interaction, and taken into consideration when planning health care. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Feelings include:
  • Dealing with fear, death and dying; fear of the unknown; anxiety.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Typical feelings in response to situations are identified, and different counselling and support techniques are used in managing the feeling and emotions of healthcare users. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Techniques include: supportive counselling, bereavement and problem solving.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Own communication 'triggers', strengths and limitations are identified and discussed in terms of possible impact on interactions with health care users. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Communication is characterised by self-control and modelling of communication which promotes dignity and establishes the basis for relationships of mutual respect. 


    UNIT STANDARD ACCREDITATION AND MODERATION OPTIONS 
    Accreditation Options:
  • Providers of learning towards this unit standard will need to meet the accreditation requirements of the relevant ETQA.

    Moderation Option:
  • The moderation requirements of the relevant ETQA must be met in order to award credit to learners for this unit standard. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
    The following essential embedded knowledge will be assessed through assessment of the specific outcomes in terms of the stipulated assessment criteria. Candidates are unlikely to achieve all the specific outcomes, to the standards described in the assessment criteria, without knowledge of the listed embedded knowledge. This means that for the most part, the possession or lack of the knowledge can be directly inferred from the quality of the candidate's performance. Where direct assessment of knowledge is required, assessment criteria have been included in the body of the unit standard.

    The following embedded knowledge is addressed in an integrated way in the unit standard:
  • Understanding communication techniques (responding).
  • Application of empathy within the nurse-patient relationship.
  • Application of Rogerian principles of helping communication.
  • Application of listening skills.
  • Understanding non-verbal communication.
  • Understanding cultural aspects related to communication.
  • Differentiate between Professional and Social interaction.
  • Application of problem-solving skills.
  • Concept of congruency.
  • Interpersonal skills.
  • Concept of advice versus information. 

  • UNIT STANDARD DEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOME 
    N/A 

    UNIT STANDARD LINKAGES 
    N/A 


    Critical Cross-field Outcomes (CCFO): 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO IDENTIFYING 
    Identify and solve problems and make decisions using critical and creative thinking.

    Note: Essential in this standard in the process of working with patients and establishing relationships. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO WORKING 
    Work effectively with others as members of a team, group, organisation or community.

    Note: Relationships imply teamwork - with patients, nursing team, and significant others.x 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    Work effectively with others as members of a team, group, organisation or community.

    Note: Relationships imply teamwork - with patients, nursing team, and significant others. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    Organise and manage themselves and their activities responsibly and effectively.

    Note: Essential to the provision of nursing care in a supporting relationship. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    Collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate information.

    Note: The relationship has to do with empowering the patient and demands accurate and timeous information. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    Communicate effectively, using visual, mathematical and/or language skills in the modes of oral and/or written presentations.

    Note: Communication is at the heart of the standard; as is the presentation of information. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO DEMONSTRATING 
    Use science and technology effectively and critically showing responsibility towards the environment and health of others.

    Note: Indirectly - nursing and information with respect to patient's health status involves technology. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO CONTRIBUTING 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the world as a set of related systems by recognising that problem-solving contexts do not exist in isolation.

    Note: Core to health and understanding the body as a system. 

    UNIT STANDARD ASSESSOR CRITERIA 
    N/A 

    REREGISTRATION HISTORY 
    As per the SAQA Board decision/s at that time, this unit standard was Reregistered in 2012; 2015. 

    UNIT STANDARD NOTES 
    Notes to Assessors:

    Assessors should keep the following general principles in mind when designing and conducting assessments against this unit standard:
  • Focus the assessment activities on gathering evidence in terms of the main outcome expressed in the title to ensure assessment is integrated rather than fragmented. Remember we want to declare the person competent in terms of the title. Where assessment at title level is unmanageable, then focus assessment around each specific outcome, or groups of specific outcomes.
  • Make sure that evidence is gathered across the entire range, wherever it applies. Assessment activities should be as close to the real performance as possible, and where simulations or role-plays are used, there should be supporting evidence to show the candidate is able to perform in the real situation.
  • Do not focus the assessment activities on each assessment criterion. Rather make sure the assessment activities focus on outcomes and are sufficient to enable evidence to be gathered around all the assessment criteria.
  • The assessment criteria provide the specifications against which assessment judgements should be made. In most cases, knowledge can be inferred from the quality of the performances, but in other cases, knowledge and understanding will have to be tested through questioning techniques. Where this is required, there will be assessment criteria to specify the standard required.
  • The task of the assessor is to gather sufficient evidence, of the prescribed type and quality, as specified in this unit standard, that the candidate can achieve the outcomes again and again and again. This means assessors will have to judge how many repeat performances are required before they believe the performance is reproducible.
  • All assessments should be conducted in line with the following well documented principles of assessment: appropriateness, fairness, manageability, integration into work or learning, validity, direct, authentic, sufficient, systematic, open and consistent.

    The following particular issues should be taken into consideration when assessing against this unit standard:
  • The SANC guidelines are used as a reference for integrated assessment.
  • Formative Assessment: A variety of assessment strategies and/or approaches integrating theory and practice must be used. These could be tests, assignments, projects, demonstrations or clinical assessments or any other applicable method.
  • Summative: This could take a form of oral, written and/or practical assessments as agreed to with the relevant ETQA.

    Definition of Terms:

    Terms have been clarified as far as possible through the use of range statements. Further clarification of terms is provided as follows:
  • The terms "patient" and "health care user" are used interchangeably in this unit standard. The term patient is used internationally, and the term health care user is used in the Nursing Act 33 of 2005, as well as the National Health Act 61 of 2003.
  • Relationships as defined within the Diploma are "supportive" as opposed to "therapeutic" which is the province of the Professional Nurse. 

  • QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Fundamental  59236   National Diploma: Nursing  Level 5  NQF Level 05  Reregistered  2021-06-30  As per Learning Programmes recorded against this Qual 
    Fundamental  59257   Bachelor of Nursing  Level 7  NQF Level 08  Reregistered  2021-06-30  As per Learning Programmes recorded against this Qual 
    Elective  66389   Higher Certificate: Diagnostic and Procedural Coding  Level 5  NQF Level 05  Reregistered  2023-06-30  HW SETA 


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
    This information shows the current accreditations (i.e. those not past their accreditation end dates), and is the most complete record available to SAQA as of today. Some Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionaries have a lag in their recording systems for provider accreditation, in turn leading to a lag in notifying SAQA of all the providers that they have accredited to offer qualifications and unit standards, as well as any extensions to accreditation end dates. The relevant Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionary should be notified if a record appears to be missing from here.
     
    NONE 



    All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.