Bad news

This is an essential part in the treatment of cancer patients. The impact of this communication affects patient’s emotional adjustments, treatment compliance and overall health outcome.

Psychosocial & emotional aspects

Various emotions are at stake in cancer patients. The physicians need to elicit the emotional response, validate the concerns and be empathetic at the same time.

Complex information & long-term trust

Physicians attitude regarding the understanding of the patients may emit various nonverbal cues of negative impact which might reduce the impact of verbal communication.

Hope & overlapping uncertainties

Various inherent uncertainties regarding the treatment options and coupled with need for hope.

Statistics related to the prognosis

Sharing quantitative information from patients perspective, framing information, using visual aids, misunderstanding and overly concrete misinterpreting of the numbers and statistics by the patients.

Promoting heath & behavior

Patient navigators responsible for various health education and promotion faces the challenges of safety, setting boundary, facing and overcoming boundary, emotional turmoil, etc.

Treatment decision

Various ethical aspects and patient expectations in treatment decision.

Communication with grieving family

Death of a relative due to cancer is a devastating and life changing event for family members and challenge lies in comforting, being empathetic listener and rely on nonverbal cues.

Family member of patient with hereditary cancer

Identifying the at risk family member of hereditary cancer patients and advocating the need for screening for similar cancer.

Palliative & end-of-life care

Emotional nature of the communication, difficulty in differentiating emotions, structural aspects, etc. may affect communication.

Children or elderly with cancer

Difficulty in explicating the level of understanding and emotional impact, differentiating self-emotion from those of patients.

Patients of culture & language

Cultural and language barrier affects the whole communication dynamic between the physician and the patients.

Patients in clinical trials

Recruitment of patients, expectation of patients, potential adverse effects, impact on quality of life, complexity of clinical trial protocol, unconscious biases, lack of cultural competence, etc.