Role Play 1 -Mr Aveo Fred
The patient is Mr Aveo Fred, an Australian man in his 50s, recently back from an African trip. He is greatly worried about certain symptoms he himself has observed about him. Initially he had fever, headache, muscle pain and chills. In the last three days he experienced internal bleeding resulting in twice vomiting and once coughing blood. Mr Fred thinks that he has got an infection of Ebola. Mr Fred is afraid of disclosing his suspicion to any doctor so he has decided to consult this with a nurse at Holy Cross Hospital.
Nurse – Good evening, Mr Fred. What brings to feeling extremely stressed?
Mr Fred – Thank you for your concern, Miss but tell me, shall I disclose something that presently worries me with that trust I place in God?
Nurse – That sounds serious. Trust me, you can disclose anything to me if that will reduce your present state of mind.
Mr Fred – Miss, I was touring Africa for two weeks, staying with my friends and colleagues in Congo, Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. After reaching here in Sydney, I feel that I have got infected with… eh.
Nurse – Please come on. Infected with what?
Mr Fred – With a virus Australia has never had got. I mean, Ebola virus.
Nurse – That is a matter for worry Mr Fred but you know, what makes you think that you have got it? Have you got a test report?
Mr Fred – I am afraid to request a test, you see. You can imagine what happens to someone who has brought Ebola to Australia, a country that has had no such case reported. Hm… I have started suspecting an infection three days ago when some of its symptoms corresponded to my present illnesses. I have nausea, vomiting and internal bleeding. Besides, I have recurrent pains in the abdomen, chest, joints and yes, all over the muscles.
Nurse – You have given a vivid explanation. Well, some of the symptoms and your presence in those African countries have something to suggest Ebola but there are other factors to look into.
Mr Fred – Like?
Nurse – Like the occurrence of these symptoms. Have you had vomiting and nausea after a long journey? When did you observe internal bleeding?
Mr Fred – Answering the first question, yes, I have had vomiting, nausea and even bleeding in stool and while coughing after long journeys but I never had them for such a long time.
Nurse – Well, but may I ask you, did you stay in those countries with people affected with Ebola? Did you get in direct contact with someone who died of Ebola infection?
Mr Fred – That’s what I did. I was in a village when I happened to help bury the dead body of a two year that died of Ebola infection. Villagers were reluctant to bury the body and the parents were in mourning. Out of compassion, I helped the child’s father to bury the body.
Nurse – You are a great man, Mr Fred but I fear the symptoms have got something to suggest Ebola in Australia.
Mr Fred – As I have feared. Miss, I am a brave man so I don’t worry about anything. What should I do now?
Nurse – Stay calm, Mr Fred. I will do all that can be done in your case. There are a lot of treatment and precautions we can do to save your precious life. You will be shortly rushed for supportive intensive care where you will undergo oxygen therapy and the assistance of IV fluids. I appreciate your presence of mind and strong will power. We will also administer blood transfusion if necessary. If you are Australia’s first case of Ebola, the country will take care of you with due respect for your humanitarian contribution to that little African child whom you helped to bury.
Mr Fred – That’s so much goodness, Miss, to hear. I have strong will power and presence of mind. My only worry is about the people of Australia who are now at risk because of my reckless behavior.
Nurse – You needn’t worry about that. Will you mind accompanying me to the intensive care unit right now?
Mr Fred – Here we go, then.
Introduction to OET Speaking
OET Speaking consists of a set of warm up questions followed by two role-plays. Warm-up questions are very friendly questions about you. Although you do not score here, your poor response to warm-ups will badly affect your Reading score.
What kind of profession are your dealing with?
I am a nurse with three years of experience in operation theater and recently one year experience in an intensive care cardiac unit.
Why did you choose this profession?
Well, I have more than just one single reason for choosing nursing as my profession. Frankly speaking, I love caring people in distress. I think I have imbibed this attitude from some of my relatives and yes, from my own mother and uncle, who were both doctors. Secondly, in my society most girls are, what we say, earmarked for this noble profession which is highly yielding and moderately respected.
What advice can you give the upcoming nurses?
I would advise them to love their profession more than the huge money it can bring. As for any noble profession, medical profession too attracts greed and materialism. Moreover, respect your profession and your patients. Remember every other profession is as hard as nursing is.
Do you have a role model in your profession?
Very much, yes! I find my uncle in the first place to pick out from among scores of people who have influenced me in shaping my career and outlook. My father’s eldest brother, this uncle of mine is my glowing role model because he was our village’s first doctor and his wife the first nurse. He was a passionate medical professional who worked day and night for the ill and inflicted in our village and outside.
Please speak about your routine day as a nurse.
A nurse’ routine consists of more days than nights. It is supposed to be so and I do not find it very hard to cope up with. Early rising, a hasty preparation, a speedy journey to the hospital, getting into work in time, skidding from ward to theater and then to patients, accompanying duty doctors on their rounds, preparing reports, the life of a nurse is eventful day in and day out.
“What are the good qualities of a good nurse?”
Unlike the qualities expected and fostered in every professional, a nurse needs to imbibe more human qualities for which the weak and dying should find repose and hope in them. One of the most prominent quality of a nurse is willingness to be a nurse. A nurse is a specially gifted person who runs to care for the afflicted when the rest of the world cringes (unwilling). Another quality that places a human being much above ordinary humanity is sympathy and empathy. A nurse should be able to find her patient in her own place. Patience, punctuality and dedication are some other qualities that are expected to be found in a nurse.
Why did you choose nursing as a profession, Elizabeth?
Nursing is a noble profession that satisfies anyone who wishes to earn a decent living by helping the humanity. That means, one can feed one’s ambitions and.. Besides, nursing as a profession opens up opportunities to socialize.
Role Plays - Getting Ready!
After the initial warm up questions, your interlocutor moves ahead to 2 role plays, one after another. Both almost similar, let’s look at one solved role play.
Relax and get ready for the second part of the speaking sub test – the 3 minute preparation time before speaking test for each role play. This part of the sub test allows you to read and study carefully the role card in terms of the setting, the patient details, primary and secondary medical issues, the patient’s emotional state, and the 3-5 Speaking Tasks.
Underline key words in the role cards to remind you of the important information to guide you through during the actual Speaking tests. Write notes or bullet points for each Speaking task, to serve as your reference and guide during the actual Speaking test.
Aim for the overall communicative effectiveness. Note that the Speaking test requires you to perform any and all of the following:
To achieve success in the Speaking sub-test, you must be able to communicate effectively and maintain MEANINGFUL INTERACTION to your patient (or carer) who maybe angry, anxious, depressed, despondent, stubborn, demanding, and any other patient types.
Demonstrate EMPATHY and use appropriate empathy phrases.
For example: “I can understand that your are feeling anxious or upset.”
Aim to speak in CLEAR ENGLISH. Intelligibility is` one criterion. Demonstrate your fluency (i.e. ability to speak in natural speed), pronounce clearly, apply proper intonation, word stress and rhythm.
- Read the role play cue-card carefully.
- See if it is formal or informal role-play.
- If the patient is new at your desk, the role-play is formal.
- If the patient is known to you, the role play is informal.
Listen to the patient and understand his/her mood
Angry / upset
- Very good morning, Ms Smith. My mother is a patient in the cardiac ward. I am her only surviving relation. I am shocked that the cardiac nurses have declined my request to meet her once. May I know why this so happened?
Worried / anxious
- Good evening, nurse, but you see, eh… you know, the thing that troubles me now is this pain in the knee. Why is it not yet cured? It has been a week now, with all those medicines, you see.
Step 3 Responding to the Patient
How to Reply to a Patient who is in pain / who has a complaint, etc.
- Oh! That’s sad to hear but there is no need to panic.
- That’s unfortunate!
Ask a few add-on questions to clarify. Maximum 3. (Not under severe situations)
- Well, would mind giving me more details about the operation/pain?’
- Do you remember the first occurrence of the pain?
- Have you brought your papers, especially the previous doctor’s medical reports along with your MRI result?
Make the patient understand that you have understood his/her problem.
- This is a normal case called …… .
- There are over 200 similar cases daily dealt by every hospital these days.
Start your Reply.
Talk like an expert. Use a few easy medical terms that the patient may or may not understand.
- Thyroid gland is very necessary for people, especially for women.
Say that this is a normal case. Quote examples of recovery cases. Assure that there is nothing to worry. Have your cool because you have almost recovered from a very serious situation.
- Inform what you (the hospital/doctors) have done for him.
- “We have done all kinds of tests on you and found no malignant agents of cancer in your brain.”
Inform what the doctors are going to do for him.
- For your information, you will have to undergo weekly checkups for three months.
- You may be asked to monitor your diet during the treatment.
- You may also be advised to abstain from alcohol for the same duration.
Your personal advice/suggestion.
Role Play 2 -Ms Edith Fisher
The patient is Ms Edith Fisher. He has a very old backache since she was 15 years. Now at the age of 34, still not married, she feels that she cannot live a normal life. She is worried about her future especially because she has no healthy relationship with her parents and brothers. Further more, she is doubtful of her ability to carry out personal day today activities as the pain starts without any reason.
Really sad to know that you are in a fix, Ms Fisher. Now relax, sit as comfortably as you can so that you can allow me to get a better idea of the problem you are facing. How did you get this back pain? I mean, did you have a fall? Or is it something else?
Thank you, nurse. I developed this pain while cycling in the dirt with several friends. The track was a steep hillside. Once when the cycle went off track, I was flung out of the cycle and fell upon my back. It was upon a rock I landed and soon I found myself in a hospital for a week.
Oh! I can quite well feel the impact of such a fall, especially being flung from a cycle. I think you had been at a high speed, you see, with friends. Now please tell me, what did the doctors say?
The doctor said I have serious dislocation of bones, especially some of them around the hip.
What kind of treatment did you receive?
I have received various kinds of treatments including realignment of my hip bones. Several times I got injected and consumed a load of medicines.
Alright, Ms Fisher. Now tell me, on a pain scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the worst pain and 1 being the least, how would you rate your pain at present?
Well, I would painfully place it very close to 9.
(Laughs) Did you get any relief from the pain after the treatment?
Yes, I got great relief after a year long treatment. I thought I was completely well to resume my studies but while boarding bus to college, I slipped and fell again. Since then I knew no relief.
Jesus! How careless of you! A patient with such a serious hip dislocation should know her limits – doesn’t she? Now, leave it and tell me – Do you have any family history of arthritis or this kind of pain?
Not really. If I remember well, one of my grand uncles had back pain from birth.
Are you able to carry out your day today activities like cooking, washing and cleaning?
Yes, I manage cooking and washing mechanically. I mean, with machines. I have made great agility in operating them. Looking at the future, I may not have any trouble with daily chores.
Did you consult any general practitioner to rule out the reason behind this pain and to get a reassurance?
Not a general practitioner but an orthopaedic doctor. He is a known man and a family member of mine.
Alright, that’s good. So what did he say?
He advised me to carry out a set of regular exercise and yoga. I have not tried yoga but I keep doing exercise. The problem is I get tired of exercise.
Nurse (Concluding Reply)
Who doesn’t get tired of exercise? Myself I had fallen several times, Ms Fisher. Honestly speaking, dear Edith, I was most careful about following the doctor’s recommendations. I followed each of his instructions, went for weekly check ups and completed my medicine regimens. I found Yoga and regular exercise a burden but I had to stand by myself.
I understand, nurse but you see, I have not tried Yoga yet because the postures are too difficult except the one that you do in lying position. Well I shall give a try.
You have to give a serious try, Ms Fisher. You are quite young and is promising. You should overcome your inability that is caused more by your laziness than by the accident. Be careful in all movements you make. Do not lift heavy objects at all. Start loving yourself and see the changes.
I understand your concerns. Okay. I will do as you say.
Questions that a Nurse can Ask
- Nurse: That’s unfortunate! By the way, have you consulted Dr. Wills on your previous appointment?
- Nurse: Please tell me more about your medical history.
- Nurse: Is there anything else I should know about you?
- Nurse: What are your daily activities?
- Nurse: What kind of exercise do you do?
- Nurse: What does your daughter eat usually?
- Nurse: What do you do daily?
- Nurse: What time do you take medication?
- Nurse: What time does your daughter take medication?
- Nurse: Where does it hurt?
- Nurse: When did the pain occur?
- Nurse: When did the pain start?
- Nurse: When was the last time you visited GP?
- Nurse: When was the last time you visited the clinic?
- Nurse: What is bothering you today?
- Nurse: How long have you had the pain?
- Nurse: How llong have you been suffering DM?
- Nurse: How long have you been hypertensive?
- Nurse: How long have you been taking these medications?
- Nurse: How long have you been exercising?
- Nurse: How long have you been maintaining diet and exercise?
- Nurse: How long have you been diagnosed with DM?
- Nurse: How long have you been experiencing these difficulties?
- Nurse: How often do you take the medicine?
- Nurse: How often the patient become disoriented?
- Nurse: How often do you exercise?
- Nurse: How often the patient become disoriented?
- How often do u exercise?
- How often do you walk?
- How often do you get headache?
- How often do you get the pain?
- How many ciggretts do you smoke?
- How many hours do you sleep?
- How many children do you have?
- How much do you drink?
- Do you drink alcohol everyday?
- Does he drink alcohol everyday?
- Does anyone in your family has the same condition?
- Do you know about DM?
- Does your husband know about DM?
- Does anyone in your family has the history of CA?
- Does the pain wake you up at night?
- Does the pain intolerable?
- Are you eating normally?
- Is he eating normally?
- Is your wife know about the correct techniques of breastfeeding?
- Is their anyone in your family with the same condition?
- Have you had any nausea and vomiting?
- Has your husband has any nausea or vomiting?
- Have you been taking medication?
- Has their any changes in your symptom?
- Has he been taking this medication?
- How long has he been taking this medication?
- Has their any changes in your symptom?
- Can you cook for yourself?
- Can you walk yourself?
- Do you need any assistance?
- Can you tell me when you first noticed these symptoms?
- Could you tell me about your family history?
- Could you tell me about your previous medicine?
Role Play 3 -Mr Silas
The patient, Mr Silas, is not willing to follow the hospital’s dietary pattern as he has been on another dietary pattern to reduce weight.
Patient: Nurse, I cannot follow this dietary pattern. You will have to arrange my own pattern.
Nurse: Mr Silas, sorry to say that as you are a patient, you should follow the dietary pattern of this hospital. Our diet is a balanced one for each patient. What makes you think that you cannot follow it?
Patient: I am sorry, but you cannot refuse my request without asking me further queries regarding my special request.
Nurse: I’m really concerned about dietary aspects for that reason. Well, Mr Silas, could you please list it down – I mean your dietary pattern? If it is neutralized with your required regimen, we will go ahead with that for your convenience.
Patient: Thank you for your understanding my concern. In fact I have been on an Indian medication to reduce belly fat. I am not allowed to eat anything meaty, you see. I have been warned against all food that have fat and excess calorie. No to milk, no to curd and of course, no to burgers and sandwiches.
Nurse: Sorry to see that your dietary pattern has clashed with ours. In fact, the medicines you take might have restriction with certain group of foods. Anyway, your information has given me highlight about your needs. I will discuss with the dietician for your case and will bring forth a favourable menu.
Patient: It will be grateful if you seek higher opinion with the dietician. It is so kind of you.
Nurse: Apart from the planned dietary regimen, I can suggest some more measures to reduce your body weight. Have small and frequent diet. Engage your life with some recreational activities, this in turn will reduce your craving to eat and you can spend your time in an useful manner.
Patient: Really I am very much interested with the above advices..but little confused about the recreational activities because I am leading a hectic life these days..
Nurse: Regarding small and frequent diet, you can have a small portion of your allotted food first time then after 2 hours have a little. This will help you to feel that you are not starving. So you can be happy the same time you are only having the allotted diet alone.
Patient: Okay then I will try small and frequent feeds as well.
Nurse: Really happy to hear from you. I wish you all the very success related to this mind blowing decision of yours. Thank you for the time you have spent with me.
Do you have a role model? Who? Why?
What are the qualities of a nurse?
What are the challenges that nursing and nurses face today?
Tell me more about Australia.
What are your plans after reaching Australia?