Comparative review of family–professional communication: What mental health care can learn from oncology and nursing home care
Because family members take on caring tasks and also suffer as a consequence of the illness of the patient, communication between health‐care professionals and family members of the patient is important. This review compares communication practices between these two parties in three different parts of health care: oncology, nursing home care, and mental health care. It shows that there are important differences between sectors. Mental health stands out because contacts between family members and professionals are considered problematic due to the autonomy and confidentiality of the patient. The article explores several explanations for this, and, by comparing the three health sectors, distils lessons to improve the relationship between family members and health‐care professionals.