This component covers the following modules:
- Moving towards a bond-centred approach
- The Client Journey Part 1: Before the last appointment
- The Client Journey Part 2: After the last appointment
- Supporting the client after their pet’s passing
- Bringing Everything Together
This component switches to the client journey through pet loss. For members of the client support team, faced with having to deal with upset pet owners either on the phone, or face-to-face, it's important to get the very start of the client journey right. This initial contact is one which can make or break a client's experience, and sets the tone for everything that is to follow. Your practice will be judged on this most-sensitive of introductions.
Yet this is an area that receptionists and the client support team receive very little training on. In our research, we found that the front-of-house team tended to follow the lead from the clinical team. The clinical team however face a very different task and often aren't charged with handling this initial very sensitive conversation. In this client journey component we aim to empower any of the practice team who are in this front-facing role.
The client journey is covered in its entirety, from the initial call through to the necessary adminstration procedures that should take place after a client has lost their pet. Tips are given on call-handling with suggestions for words to use or open questions to help the owner to open up on the phone about their needs. The client journey is followed from arrival in the clinic, with advice on how to greet the client, and then where and how to manage the waiting time. Payment handling, both on the phone, and on clinic arrival is covered to help make this often-awkward conversation a little easier.
Charging for euthanasia or aftercare is an area that practices find difficult to manage. Advice is given for how to cost euthanasia procedures so that adequate time can be given to allow a compassionate client experience, rather than a rushed one. Time is often seen as a barrier to best-practice end-of-life care, and this is addressed in the first module of this component. Suggestions are made to help overcome barriers of time, cost, spatial considerations as well as helping to shape practice guidelines to allow a more compassionate approach.
Following the pet's euthanasia, the third module will help the client support team to deal with the owner when they come out of the consultation or comfort room and have to leave their pet behind. This can be a very distressing time for owners, and the training will help you to negotiate it successfully. This module also deals with the administration that must take place after the client has left and looks at aftercare options.
Client grief is something that in our research we found that team members were reluctant or unsure of how to deal with. We give clear guidance on steps to follow to ensure that your client knows where they can seek further help if needed. Bereavement packs and information for inclusion is given.
Finally, in the last module we looks at brining all the learning together from the course into practice protocols and guidelines that help the team to operate as a cohesive unit in delivering gold-standard end-of-life care.
As with the other components there are reflective exercises along the way to help embed the learning. Each module guides the student through the information via video, audio, articles and downloads. Each module concludes with a brief multiple choice assessment which contributes towards passing of the component.
The component is expected to take about 2.5 hours in total. On completion and passing of the component, participants will receive a certificate and accreditation points, as well as a Compassion Understood lapel badge if this component is taken as a stand-alone unit.