Supporting the

Neuroendocrine Cancer Community

Conversation Openers: Practical advice for healthcare professionals

May 13, 2024

Conversation Openers: Practical advice for healthcare professionals on ‘how’ to have open conversations about mental health with their patients 

In 2022, Neuroendocrine Cancer UK and rareminds (an organisation that provides specialist mental health support for the rare disease community,) launched the Open Conversation Report on neuroendocrine cancer and mental health.  The aim was to highlight the need for a greater understanding of the psychosocial and emotional impact faced by neuroendocrine cancer (NC) patients and carers compared with the ‘common’ cancer population.   

 

The report recommends that healthcare professionals (HCPs) should hold open and ongoing conversations with their patients about neuroendocrine cancer and mental health.  The mental health support of neuroendocrine cancer patients and families involves a range of provisions which includes sensitive enquiry by HCPs into patient wellbeing and good care coordination.  Support with care coordination or navigating services can also play a significant role in either ameliorating or exacerbating patient/ carer mental health. 

Conversation Openers is part of our ‘Spotlight on Neuroendocrine Cancer’ campaign, which aims to raise awareness of neuroendocrine cancer (NC) among non-NC specialist healthcare professionals.  

Conversation Openers, in partnership with rareminds, will act as a follow-on from the Open Conversations report and support HCPs by providing practical communication tips on how they can have open and ongoing conversations with their patients about their neuroendocrine cancer and mental health.     

Conversation Openers consists of a short series of ‘bitesize’ videos which are easy and quick for HCPs to watch and cover topics including the emotional challenges of a rarer cancer for patients, how to integrate mental health and well-being into routine care, how to start conversations around mental health and practical communication tips.  

We are launching this series during Mental Health Week 2024.