Communication Station Guide

The communication station is one that has not been included in the 2022 and 2021 interview cohorts. It is unclear if they will include it for the 2023 interview. During this station you will have to discuss something with a colleague, nurse or patient/family. It is a challenging station, but ultimately it is something you do on a day to day basis. It is important to communicate clearly, stay calm and structure your answer.

There are a number of frameworks which you may find useful to structure your answers to answer the communication station:


SPIES-R framework when dealing with a ethical situation

  • Seek information – discuss with the individual involved, read through the patients notes etc.
  • Patient safety – take steps to protect patients who may be at risk of harm
  • Initiative – What are you going to do to solve the scenario
  • Escalate – discussion with your direct senior or encouraging others to discuss with their seniors
  • Support – if struggling colleague you might be able to offer emotional support or recommend where they can go for this e.g. GP, occupational health
  • Reflect – document It in your e-portfolio/ISCP


SPIKES framework when breaking bad news or informing patients of a new diagnosis:

  • Set up – Involve family, create privacy, give your bleep to a colleague
  • Perception – assess patient understanding of the situation. How much information do they know/want to know.
  • Invitation – ask if they would like to know the information now
  • Knowledge – be direct and use language that the patient can understand
  • Empathise – use empathetic statements and pay attention to the patient’s emotions. Allow for silence
  • Summarise and strategize the information and plan the next steps in the patients care.