Defense Date

4-30-2021

Graduation Date

Summer 8-7-2021

Availability

One-year Embargo

Submission Type

dissertation

Degree Name

PhD

Department

Communication and Rhetorical Studies

School

McAnulty College and Graduate School of Liberal Arts

Committee Chair

Craig T. Maier

Committee Member

Erik Garrett

Committee Member

Anthony M. Wachs

Keywords

technology, health care, patient-centered care, communication ethics, nursing, COVID-19, pandemic, patient-provider communication, patient autonomy, telehealth

Abstract

Written in a historical moment marked in many ways by the COVID-19 pandemic and the changes it has wrought, including the increased availability and use of telehealth services, this project attempts to consider the implications of the continued integration of technology into health care, centering on the following essential question: How do technological changes affect the contemporary practice of healthcare communication, particularly that which occurs between the patient—the consumer of health care—and their provider? This dissertation thus considers the ways in which such linkages of technology and health care seem to fit into a larger shift within health care that has occurred over recent decades: the move away from a paternalistic model of health care to one that is more patient-centered and respectful of the autonomy of the individual patient. As is argued throughout—drawing from literature ranging from the role of technology in health care to patient–provider communication, and from social justice issues within health care to communication ethics—technology offers considerable promise for the healthcare setting, in that it is helping to empower patients and providers alike, as well as potentially democratizing health care itself. At the heart of this is the communication that transpires during the patient–provider encounter and in the context of this healthcare relationship.

Language

English

Available for download on Sunday, August 07, 2022

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