In the academic world, English was brought by the Tabella XVIII, introduced by the European Committee, which made English a compulsory examination in any medical course. The skill required as described in the Decree is: “a basic knowledge of English, with the end of acquiring the ability to keep up-to-date in experimental and clinical medicine”. The Decree stated what should be the macroskills, but didn’t explain what “basic English” meant. So Universities were left discussing the syllabus and what should be learnt, and guidelines to overcome the surfacing issues and to standardize requirements. Also, the process of globalisation has produced a sort of melting pot, where linguistic (and cultural) negotiations must take place between clinical staff and patients from immigrant communities. Communication is a key issue in safe and competent care. Poor command of English language might affect our students’ future jobs, preventing them from taking up challenging international settings and experiences. English for specific purposes in an English language course should be the first step in learning health care language, but it must be improved by Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills (BICS), used to understand the different realities offered by immigrants. This kind of approach is certainly patient-centred, which is eventually the goal of this kind of specific language and professional course: to overcome language/cultural barriers in health care services.
|Stato di pubblicazione||Published - 2009|