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How to Break Bad News to People with Intellectual Disabilities

How to Break Bad News to People with Intellectual Disabilities

Irene Tuffrey-Wijne | Sheila Hollins


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Book Details


This book offers unique and flexible guidelines that can be used by practitioners to ease the process of breaking bad news to people with intellectual disabilities. The guidelines, which are adaptable to individual communication ability and level of understanding, address the many complex needs of people with intellectual disabilities who can find understanding and accepting news that has a negative impact on their life a very difficult task. In the book, Irene Tuffrey-Wijne covers a range of different types of bad news, from bereavement and illness to more minor issues such as a change of accommodation, and offers highly practical and effective tips that will help carers and practitioners ensure that bad news is relayed as sensitively and successfully as possible.

An easy-to-use and comprehensive guide, this book will be an invaluable resource of information for carers, health professionals such as doctors and nurses as well as families of people with intellectual disabilities.

I found this book a pleasurable read, despite the delicate subject matter. It is clearly written and is full of examples that are instantly recognisable in my daily practice. The book highlights the importance of helping clients understand bad news situations regardless of their level of intellectual disability, and proves how including a client's support network in the process can be crucial in ensuring that bad news is successfully relayed. Practical and easily accessible, this book finally provides us with a set of solid guidelines to support our practice!
Marja Oud, palliative care lead and unit manager in a residential facility for people with intellectual disabilities, Netherlands
Irene Tuffrey-Wijne has written a thoroughly researched and clinically sound primer on how to break important, life-changing news to people with intellectual disabilities...This is a wise book deeply embedded in scholarly research and direct patient care and I commend it to everyone concerned about someone with intellectual disability and their future.
Baroness Sheila Hollins, Professor of the Psychiatry of Learning Disability at St George's, University of London, and a crossbench life peer in the House of Lords
Irene Tuffrey-Wijne qualified as a nurse in Amsterdam, and moved to the UK in 1985. She holds a first degree in Palliative Care Nursing and completed a PhD in the palliative care of people with intellectual disabilities at Maastricht University, The Netherlands. Irene has extensive clinical experience in the fields of both intellectual disabilities (as a support worker and home manager) and palliative care (as a clinical nurse specialist at a hospice). She now works as a Senior Research Fellow at St George's University of London, leading a programme of research aimed at improving health care and end of life care for people with learning disabilities. She is chair of the Palliative Care for people with Learning Disabilities Network. She is also author of Living with Learning Disabilities, Dying with Cancer and lives in London with her husband and three children.
This is an excellent book. It is thought provoking, and well-structured. It enables the reader to develop better insights into the impact of receiving bad news, not just for people with learning disabilities, but also in mainstream life. It deserves a place on everyone's bookshelf.
Bereavement Care
As a parent, I wish I had been able to use this book by Dr Irene Tuffrey-Wijne when my daughter was slowly dying. Her guidelines are realistic, reassuring and rooted in a deep understanding of the highly individual needs of people with intellectual disabilities. It makes total sense to me that breaking bad news is a process, not an event. It demonstrates that it is possible to support someone with intellectual disabilities to come to terms with painful issues.
Jan Sunman, parent carer and participant in Dr Irene Tuffrey -Wijne's research