For these reasons and more, healthcare providers at Burnaby Centre, Heartwood Centre for Women, the Forensic Psychiatric Hospital, and community-based clinics will begin wearing name tags in the coming weeks. The initiative builds on the success of the "Hello, my name is" campaign that ran at Burnaby Centre a few years ago.
"When you introduce yourself to a client it helps develop trust," said Katie Mai, Leader, Patient Experience and Community Engagement, BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services (BCMHSUS). "Our goal is that by wearing name tags, we will improve the care experience for clients across our services and programs."
While all BCMHSUS staff currently wear lanyards with their name and title, the workplace ID is not something that can be easily seen or -- in many cases — understood by clients.
"The new name tags will include the care provider's preferred name and position," said Mai. "The job titles will also be simplified so everyone can understand what the person does. For instance, psychiatric nurse will be called 'nurse' on the name tag."
Jane Sun, Director, Interprofessional Practice, Adult Mental Health & Substance Use Services, Burnaby Centre, has worn a name tag frequently in the course of her work. The FAQ below details her experience.
In mental health and substance use programs, many staff wear casual professional clothes rather than scrubs and white coats. As such, sometimes it can be difficult for a client to identify who is a staff member as there is no standard "uniform," and it can be hard to see a badge on a keychain/lanyard.
A nametag is a simple, nonverbal cue for clients to know who they can reach out to. For clients who forget my name after I initially introduce myself, the nametag is also a handy reminder for them without having to feel awkward for asking, or go through an entire conversation not knowing who they were talking to.
I perceived some clients to feel more comfortable with me having a nametag; it seemed to help orient them to the conversation, knowing my name and role, especially after they may have talked to many different staff in a short period of time.