Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Stories can offer a window into your patients' world

  • Comment

Storytelling has been a cornerstone of education and culture across the world for centuries.

In preliterate times stories were used to pass on the important knowledge and cultural norms and values that sustain communities.

While storytelling has retained its significance in many cultures in the developing world, in the West it became seen as largely for entertaining or educating children. But the value of storytelling in education and training has been increasingly recognised in the UK over the past few years, and this is a welcome development.

We all love good stories - I remember far more of the stories I read as a child than the academic texts I read as an undergraduate. That’s because stories engage us, take us on a journey, and show us the world from a different perspective. So I’m delighted that storytelling is increasingly used in healthcare education and practice, as our articles on the use of stories in NHS organisations and nurse education demonstrate.

There can be few areas with such a wealth of powerful stories as healthcare. These may be from patients, families or staff, and can range from the tragic to the triumphant. Appropriately used they can offer staff - and patients and their families - the opportunity to look at life through someone else’s eyes. These stories should be used to help health professionals to improve their abilities to offer patient-focused care.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment.

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.