Being Open – Communicating well with patients and families about adverse events

A one-day, interactive workshop for senior clinical staff teams

Date: Monday 26th November 2018

Venue: Almond Room, St John’s Hospital, Livingston

Time: 9.00-4.30

No fee

Workshop Overview

EC4H and NHS Lothian maternity services were funded by Health Improvement Scotland to develop and evaluate a programme of training for ‘ being open’ in the context of the management of adverse events. It is designed for use in Maternity Care. A full training pack including a communication guide and other resources are available.  Participants will work in a small peer group using role play and interactive sessions. The objective is to establish a sensitive and reliable system of training to support families and staff when an adverse event occurs and through the subsequent review process.

Topics at the workshop will include:

  • Difficult conversations
  • Importance of language/suggestions about helpful approaches
  • Significant Adverse Event process
  • Being Open about adverse events
  • Effective escalation and professional communication
  • Early co-ordination & staff support
  • Handling anger and emotional distress
  • Giving information and support to people who have been involved in an adverse event
  • Chairing case review meetings

Learning Outcomes

In this advanced clinical communication workshop participants will:

  • review their current practice in communicating with patients, their relatives, colleagues and trainees
  • identify personal learning objectives and develop strategies for addressing these within a supported peer learning group
  • critique and apply relevant literature/ theory on effective communication
  • evaluate and respond to patient/colleague perspectives
  • identify ways of increasing communication effectiveness
  • exchange ideas and experiences with colleagues

Pre-workshop preparation

Workshop participants are asked to think about how they currently communicate and what situations are particularly challenging.

Pre-workshop information is available for participants on our secure website. You will receive a link to and a password to allow you to access more information and resources for your workshop about 2 weeks before the workshop. Occasionally emails end up in spam so please check for this and contact us if you do not receive your login.

We will ask you to complete an online, pre-workshop evaluation – please do this as soon as possible as we use this information to plan your workshop.

Booking – Application Form

  • The workshop includes lunch, morning and afternoon refreshments and a copy of the EC4H workshop book.
  • You will be informed by email when your application has been received and a place has been booked for you; usually within 14 days.


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