Having Better Conversations in Challenging Situations: Breaking Bad News

12 Oct 2022 17:00 - 18:30 Lecture Theatre, Western Isles Hospital, Stornoway Free

A free interactive session for NHS Western Isles staff which helps support staff to have better conversations when breaking bad news to patients and families. Participants will watch a real time interactive demonstration led by EC4H tutors and will have the opportunity throughout the demonstration to contribute suggestions and feedback to the tutor team

Common challenges addressed are:
• Discussing complex or distressing information
• Handling anger, emotional distress, collusion or denial
• Shared decision making & informed consent
• Discussing future care planning, CPR and other treatment options

This session is open to NHS Western Isles staff only


Miss Smith, 61, was admitted via the emergency department 10 days ago with back pain and delirium. She was noted to have blood in her urine upon admission and was transferred to urology for investigation and management. Further investigation has concluded probable renal tract malignancy with widespread nodal, lung and bone metastes
A registrar has explained to Miss Smith that she has cancer and the specialists are meeting to discuss treatment. The Doctor meets with Miss Smith to discuss the outcome of the MDT and her future care

Learning Outcomes

This clinical communication workshop offers participants the opportunity to:
• Review & evaluate their current practice in relation to communication in a wide range of roles and situations.
• Identify personal learning objectives and develop strategies for addressing these within a senior clinicians’ peer learning group.
• Critique and apply relevant literature/ theory on effective communication.
• Consider and take account of patient/carer/colleague perspectives.
• Identify and practice ways of increasing communication effectiveness.


Lecture Theatre, Western Isles Hospital, Stornoway

Having Better Conversations in Challenging Situations: Breaking Bad News

Date: 12 Oct 2022
Time: 17:00 - 18:30

Tutor team

Gail Allan

EC4H Lead Tutor

Gail is the Lead Nurse, Specialist Nursing in NHS Western Isles. She completed her EC4H tutor training in October 2021. Her interests are in Anticipatory Care Planning and promoting realistic conversations. NMC: 82H0689S

Donna Young

EC4H Tutor

Donna is a cancer and palliative clinical nurse specialist in the Western isles. She has been involved in promoting the importance of effective communication in advanced care planning and also the education of student nurses. More recently she completed her tutor training with EC4H in March 2022.