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Handbook of Communication in Oncology and Palliative
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David Kissane, Barry Bultz, Phyllis Butow, and Ilora Finlay

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199238361

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199238361.001.0001

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The Oncotalk model

The Oncotalk model

Chapter:
(p.631) Chapter 54 The Oncotalk model
Source:
Handbook of Communication in Oncology and Palliative Care
Author(s):

Robert M Arnold

Anthony T Back

Walter F Baile

Kelly Fryer-Edwards

James A Tulsky

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199238361.003.0054

In 2002, funding was recieved from the National Cancer Institute to develop a new teaching model for communication skills at the end of life, aimed at medical oncology fellows. Using this model, called Oncotalk, roughly 10% of the oncology fellows trained in the United States over a five-year period were taught. The aim of Oncotalk was to address shortcomings in communication between physicians and cancer patients. In developing the programme, key educational principles were utilised, some of which had been used in other communication skills training, others of which evolved as a result of the unique demands of the teaching context. Based on this Oncotalk experience, this chapter describes common evidence-based principles used in developing an advanced communication skills programme; identifies unique aspects of the learning context within an intensive retreat structure, and illustrates the lessons learned that can be tested in other settings. The aim is to provide tools and frameworks to facilitate teaching communication skills within oncology and other clinical training programmes that prepare clinicians to work with seriously ill patients.

Keywords:   Oncotalk, teaching model, oncology, communication skills, end of life, medical oncology fellows, training, cancer patients

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