Barts and The London, School of Medicine and Dentistry


Year 5 : Breaking Bad News

Teaching Material for this Module


The General Medical Council specifically emphasises the importance of communication skills in the practise of medicine. Giving bad news is something you will be doing many times throughout your professional career and such preparation is essential to help you and your future patients with this difficult task.

This module allows you to practice giving bad news through case scenarios based on situations that you are likely to encounter as a junior doctor.

The overall aims are to:

To help students develop appropriate attitudes, principles and skills to enable them to break bad news to patients and their relatives effectively.

To be able to give information in ways that minimise unnecessary distress, enable people to understand the situation and make choices about their care, and facilitate the longer term adjustment of the individual in all respects, including the physical, psychological and social.



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