Article in:Narrative Inquiry: Online-First Articles
Clinicians’ narratives in the era of evidence-based practice
A sociolinguistic exploration of the role of narratives in staff meetings
In evidence-based practices, narratives are the vehicle through which medical knowledge is shared and clinical judgment is grounded. This paper explores narratives as a sanctioned social practice that help a group of clinicians in a healthcare institution in New Zealand build and negotiate expertise and accountability, as they discuss clinical cases. To this end, the paper investigates narratives in six staff meetings, which were video and audio recorded. The paper presents a discursive analysis of the functions of narratives in this context to show how narratives are interactional achievements that are pivotal to clinical decision-making and to building and contesting professional stances. Finally, the paper reflects on the value of narratives as shared resources that are sometimes revisited and reframed over time and that help construct a common thread of history that becomes part of the cultural capital of the organization and positions clinicians as core members of their community.
Keywords: healthcare communication, backstage interaction, professional accountability, expertise, medical case presentation, medical incidents, case narratives, cultural capital
Published online: 03 November 2020
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