Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Delivering bad news

Is there a good way to tell a mother that her daughter has died? Let's say there is a compassionate way to do so and doctors in training at Emory University School of Medicine get to practice delivering bad news in a simulation workshop:
"They might not remember your name, but they will remember exactly the phrasing you used, how you said it, if they were confused," she tells the doctors. "People can recall that event very, very vividly. People can relive that and replay that." To avoid any confusion or misunderstanding, she advises the doctors to choose their words carefully. Instead of saying "passed on" or "not going to make it," she tells them to be straightforward. "I've seen family members be confused when someone goes in to talk about the news of death and (the doctors) can't actually say the person has died."
Click here to access the CNN.com article.

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