The witty retort: an essential medical skill

QUICKLY concocted communication may be the best medicine of all but how to teach this essential skill? A few illustrative anecdotes should help.

A nurse informed a colleague of mine - when he was working as a new intern - that he needed to inform Mrs Smith’s family that she had died. He found the woman’s daughter and son-in-law in the waiting room and relayed the bad news. The patient’s daughter became hysterical. Apparently her mother had been admitted for the removal of a mole on her cheek.