The term the NHS use is – Breaking Bad News



Try Googling the above Lizzy and you will get loads of info. Also there is a policy called the Liverpool Care Pathway which is an end of life policy and I think gives some guidance. As always  with the NHS tere are lots of policies about everything  but getting them translated into actions is another thing.


This is a good site with an outline of what is being taught and what is MEANT to be happening when patients are given bad news…. I leave the expletives to you – we all know this is not happening everywhere – go get ‘em Lizzy.

site made possible by Pfizer  ( coincidentally manufacturers of Sutent)

Health Professionals find it difficult to break bad news since it means telling an individual something that they do not wish to hear. They may have had little opportunity to learn the skills required and may feel ill prepared to deal with the patient’s reactions, which can include anger, guilt, and blame of the bearer of the news



Loads more content here Lizzy……………………..


Hope this helps Lizzy. In case you are wondering where all this comes from….. My Cancer Group down in Cornwall has a couple of patients who sit on an end of life/breaking bad news Group so they  tell us what is going on


 You take care Lizzy, Love  from  Rose W xx

Posted under Rose Woodward

1 Comment so far

  1. Al January 5, 2009 5:02 pm

    ‘Breaking Bad News’ NHS style usually involves telling people they have ‘incurable and inoperable and untreatable ‘ kidney cancer, just because they are elderly, and no one wants to waste money on treating them.
    We were told, from a low quality ultrasound alone, that a kidney mass a) had replaced most of the right kidney, b) was definitely cancer (no histology) c) was all over the adrenal gland and lymph nodes, d) that surgery was not possible e) that it had metastatised to the lung, and f) that it was the cause of a high serum creatinine level, and indicated renal failure.
    No dialysis offered to an 8o year old, only ‘end of life care’ and a grim grim murdering witch with a low voice who tried to start opioid drugs, despite the absence of pain

    On paying privately however, we a) got a ct scan and biopsy, which revealed b) it was a benign mass, c) previous x rays showed the lung ‘met’ was actually a benign opacity that had been there for over 13 years, d) it was taken out laparascopically for a modest fee, e) the lymph nodes and adrenal gland were totally clear of the tumour, f) the cause fo the creatinine increase was urinary retention due to a blocked catheter tube.

    Poor old consultants , having to ‘break bad news’ ie we couldnt give a damn about you as you are old, so we’ll lie to you about the ability of dialysis to keep you going for years, even if we take both your kidneys out, and just put you down with drugs that stop you breathing to save money.
    GET A SECOND OPINION AT A DIFFERENT HOSPITAL IF YOU ARE OVER 70 – PAY FRO THE DAMNED OPERATION IF NECESSARY. PEOPLE DO NOT ‘DIE OF KIDNEY CANCER’ – THEY DIE OFA FAILURE TO OFFER DIALYSIS. The oldest person in the uk living perfectly happily with no kidneys at all is 97 – he started at the age of 90 and is still living independently of anyone else, so is hardly a burden to the state he’s paid NI contributions into for all his adult life.

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