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Description - Dying For A Chat: Penguin Special by Ranjana Srivastava

Winner of the 2013 Human Rights Literature Award

Medical oncologist Ranjana Srivastava contends that our healthcare professionals are ill equipped for frank discussions with patients, leading to misdiagnosis, avoidable medical complications and even death.

Winner of the 2013 Human Rights Literature Award
Medical oncologist Ranjana Srivastava contends that the best medicine begins with a good chat, to guide the decision-making of both doctors and patients.

Increasingly, people are unable to properly comprehend the complex treatment choices on offer, or are self-diagnosing and demanding unnecessary or risky procedures. Doctors, in turn, feel unable to deny the requests of patients and their families. Narrow specialisation also means no-one is discussing the overall picture of a patient's health. Srivastava warns that people are suffering - even dying - as a result, and the medical profession should be taking responsibility.

In a frank and clear-eyed assessment of an unacknowledged crisis, she makes an impassioned case for healthcare training to incorporate effective communication skills.

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