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Giving bad news and picking up the pieces: tips for cancer nurses

From initial diagnosis to end of life care plans, cancer nurses are likely to take a leading role in difficult conversations and emotional support for patients

From initial diagnosis to end of life care plans, cancer nurses are likely to take a leading role in difficult conversations and emotional support for patients

  • Nurses are increasingly delivering cancer diagnoses and other bad news to patients without always feeling equipped for the role
  • Initial consultations are crucial and can lay the foundations for a supportive relationship for people with a cancer diagnosis
  • Advice for nurses: how to listen, give space, signpost to extra support and avoid assumptions – and when to talk about death

Whether it is breaking bad news or supporting patients in the aftermath of hearing bad news, nurses have a key role in managing the emotional impact of

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