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5 questions for a health professional about speaking in English

What do health pros say about speaking in English when it’s not their first language?

Estela is a nurse from Brazil who works in a private rheumatology clinic in an English-speaking country.

  1. How do you feel about speaking in English?
    For me, speaking face-to-face with my patients is no problem. But this year I have to talk to them on Zoom and that’s not so easy.
  2. What’s the hardest thing about speaking in English?
    Sometimes the connection is not very good and I have to guess what they’re saying. It feels like everyone is speaking faster. And I can’t use body language or see their body language, which is frustrating. I’m not sure if I’m helping my patients. I’m also more tired after Zoom consultations.
  3. How do you overcome this?
    In EPRO Express we practised different situations and my coach gave me some useful speaking tips, like how to make sure I’ve understood well. And her feedback helped me a lot.
  4. What are your speaking goals?
    I want to feel more competent and comfortable during video chats.
  5. What’s your advice for others who need to speak in English?
    You have to practise with someone who can explain your mistakes. Then you will make faster progress and have more confidence.

For more stories about speaking, see here, here, and here.

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© Christina Wielgolawski