Spoken vs written conversations: D, I, E or K?

Lorri Zipperer Lorri at ZPM1.COM
Fri Aug 16 13:30:50 UTC 2013

I also wonder if there is a need to consider what type of content is being
communicated and the context for that communication and what is most
effective given those elements. For instance: 


Data (numbers/stats)

Information (data that has been packaged for specific use) 

Evidence (research results and its application)

Knowledge (what the knower knows -often difficult to translate into hard

Forms and methods to transfer one may not work as well for the other. Using
one mode when another would be more reliable could open the door to failure.




Lorri Zipperer, Cybrarian and editor

Zipperer Project Management 


Patient Safety: Perspectives in Evidence, Information and Knowledge Transfer


ISBN 978-1-4094-3857-1 


Knowledge Management in Health Care


ISBN: 978-1-4094-3883-0

lorri at zpm1.com






Data: nurse numbers

Information: nurse textbooks

Evidence: nurse effectiveness 

Knowledge: nurse experience


From: Karen Cosby [mailto:kcosby40 at gmail.com] 
Sent: Friday, August 16, 2013 7:19 AM
To: Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine; Lorri Zipperer
Subject: Re: [IMPROVEDX] Spoken vs written conversations:


We should perhaps distinguish between best modes of communication based on
setting.  A pathology report may guide treatment over time and between
multiple specialities.  A well-designed, methodical, and thorough report is
desirable no doubt.  In contrast, an XR or CT for a patient in the ED may
influence immediate decisions and actions. Not all written reports are
reliable.  I pull down a drop menu to select purpose of exam.  My
Radiologist may use a voice dictation which may or may not be accurate. The
ability to question and confirm (Did you understand my concern? Do I
understand what you think? Are you sure you considered a specific diagnosis?
Did you notice an area of concern I have?) is very helpful in the moment.
My concern is when someone accepts a written report without considering that
a conversation could clarify misunderstanding or give a chance to interact
with a specialist who might better inform them.  Written reports shouldn't
replace conversations; conversations shouldn't stand alone.  



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