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Clinical Communicatios Skills

In today’s world health and disease are areas closely related to sciences and technology, therefore actions based on evidence are demanding the optimization of technical interventions. The learning of the mechanisms of a disease and the guidelines of its intervention are thus extremely important.
The relationship between a health professional and a patient has frequently adopted a secondary role in the therapeutic approach. The observation of a patient beyond his/her symptoms, as well as, an explicit and implicit communication and the role of the health professional before the patient are considered part of the Art of Medicine. These factors are interpreted as a ‘calling’, rather than something one can learn.
The teaching of communication techniques was traditionally made in an informal way, not giving emphasis to communication skills. In the last few years, however, there has been an increasing interest in clinical communication skills, for that reason the necessity of teaching those skills has also increased.
Several studies state that the relationship between a health professional and a patient may reflect, not only on the level of contentment and confidence of the patient, but also on medical indicators, such as the level of blood sugar and blood pressure. The relationship also influences the economic costs, as a good relationship between doctor and patient leads to a lesser amount of tests and less work in other medical specialties.
The therapeutic relationship is based on a group of characteristics of both the patient and the health professional. It demands the use of several techniques, which may and must be learned. Given today’s situation, the knowledge in the use of these techniques is indispensable, in order to reach an optimized state in patient treatment.
To know how to observe, to be able to communicate, inform, identify feelings and act adequately are basic skills, which can be taught and learned.
According to some authors, the implicit knowledge is the main aspect of professional competence. On the other hand, the explicit knowledge is accessible and susceptible to create guidelines. Implicit knowledge is hard to transmit, as it is built by the experience and observation.
Hence, this course aims to teach the necessary skills and techniques to create a therapeutic relationship, both in an ordinary medical appointment and in specific challenging situations.

Aims: To provide a post-graduate training in the area of communication with patients.

Eligibility: Holders of a Degree or Integrated Masters Degree in Medicine or in other areas of health.


Maximum Number of Positions:

Minimum Number of Registrations: 6

 The post-graduate specialization in Clinical Communication Skills involves theoretical and practical training in three stages: basic, advanced and specialized skills. It includes, among others, (1) the skills necessary for a clinical interview, (2) emotion management, (3) dealing with bad news, (4) motivational interviewing, (5) the relationship with patients unable to speak and with anxious or depressed patients, (6) family interview, and (7) adaptation to patients’ different ages: childhood, adolescence and old age.

Collaborating Institutions: Not applicable

Administration: FMUP

Coordinator: Rui Coelho

Eligibility: Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree in Medicine, Nursing, Clinical Psychology, Physiotherapy, Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Nutrition and other health areas.

Language: Portuguese

Fee: 900.00/year

Positions: 12

Application deadline: 3.04 to 30.06.2017

Registration deadline: 26.09 to 3.10.2017

Starting date: 13.10.2017

Schedule Friday (5pm-10pm) and Saturday (9am-1pm)


To assist the application, you can consult the Guide Support (1)


To assist the registration, you can consult the Guide Support (2)



Mailing /contact address:

Department for Research and Graduate Studies - daipg@med.up.pt

Academic Division – dafmup@med.up.pt

Coordinator – rmc@med.up.pt

Website: www.med.up.pt

Dados Gerais

Código Oficial: 1007
Docente Responsável: Rui Coelho
Acronym: PGCCC
Tipo de curso/ciclo de estudos: Specialization
Start: 2007/2008
Duration: 1 Years

Study Plan


  • Clinical Communications Skills (30 ECTS credits)

Áreas Científicas Predominantes

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