CHESTLearning & EventsFirst 5 Minutes®

First 5 Minutes®

Minimal practice changes, major patient impact

Experience and patient feedback tell us patients are more willing to follow medical instructions when they feel understood. They also have better long-term health outcomes. Getting to know your patients in the short window of time you have is challenging. Now, we have a way to help establish that connection faster and more meaningfully.

Save time and see better outcomes

The First 5 Minutes program helps you build the skills that lead to a positive relationship with your patients from the get-go.

The skills are evidence-based and proven to help develop trust. Small changes in your approach can give you time back in your day. Establishing trust with your patients in the first 5 minutes of your interactions means more efficient communication.

With improved communication, you’ll see greater patient compliance. You’ll see that it takes less effort to help your patients more. Your patients will do better long-term. See the difference it can make in your practice.


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Our experts have developed evidence-based strategies for establishing trust with your patients, and that guidance is now available in a pocket-sized, downloadable skills card. Find quick-reference tips for how to quickly create rapport, respond with empathy, and begin building your relationship.


The catalyst: CHEST Foundation Listening Tour

In 2020, the CHEST Foundation embarked on a five-city Listening Tour across the US to understand the challenges that patients face in accessing health care, particularly in under-resourced communities. The message was clear: They experience a lack of access, equity, and trust. Driven to action, CHEST set out to address these barriers. Empathetic listening training emerged as the solution to build trust between patients and clinicians and improve the patient experience.


The launch: Bexar County, Texas

The First 5 Minutes initiative kicked off in Bexar County, Texas, in June 2022. Eighteen clinicians joined an in-person pilot training program at the University of Texas Health Science Center, where relationship-centered communication trainers from the Academy of Communication in Healthcare led interactive activities on empathetic listening and trust-building communication skills.


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Stephanie Levine, MD, FCCP

Professor, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

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Jay Peters, MD, FCCP

Professor, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

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Clinicians work in a small-group setting to practice empathetic listening.

Instructor leading group

Instructors from the Academy of Communication in Healthcare teach empathetic listening strategies to San Antonio clinicians during the June 18 pilot program.

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Clinicians role-play patient/clinician interactions one on one with each other to practice empathetic listening.

Get more information

Receive tools and resources, get program updates, or tell us if you want to bring First 5 Minutes to your institution.

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Support initiatives like this | The CHEST Foundation funds programs that help patients access the care they need. DONATE TO THE FOUNDATION »

First 5 Minutes Executive Steering Committee

Victor Test, MD, FCCP

Victor Test, MD, FCCP

Professor, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine

John Keith Mansel, MD, FCCP

John Keith Mansel, MD, FCCP

Physician, The University of Mississippi Medical Center

Susan Corbridge, PhD, APRN, FCCP

Susan Corbridge, PhD, APRN, FCCP

Clinical Professor Emerita, University of Illinois Chicago

CHEST gratefully acknowledges the following founding supporters of the First 5 Minutes®: Amgen, AstraZeneca, Bexar County, Novartis, Regeneron, Sanofi, and VIATRIS.

Interested in becoming a First 5 Minutes partner to transform patient care? Contact us to learn about sponsorship, grant, or contribution opportunities.