Communicating Prognosis (2017 Update)

Discussing prognosis using effective communication skills is not necessarily an inherent trait of the clinical care team. It is also important to understand how much prognostic information patients want to receive and at what point during their treatment. This course provides an overview of some basic communication skills as they relate to discussing prognosis with patients. Additionally, participants will review three case studies: one patient who wants to receive prognostic information, one patient who does not want to receive prognostic information, and one patient who is ambivalent. This course will provide members of the care team with a variety of communication tools to help them navigate through difficult conversations.

Learning Objectives:

  • Recognize basic concepts of information sharing among oncology health care professionals and patients/families
  • Define essential components of discussing prognosis with patients 
  • Discuss possible ways to respond to a direct question about prognosis
  • Explore reasons for a patient declining to receive prognostic information
  • Apply best practice communication strategies for patients who are ambivalent about discussing prognosis

2 Credits/Points are available for participation in this course. Certificate and credit types available include:

  • AMA PRA Category 1 Credits
  • ABIM MOC Points
  • CNE Contact Hours
  • ONCC ILNA Points in Scientific Basis/Diagnosis, End of Life and Roles of the APN
  • CPE Credits
  • Certificate of Participation may be used to confer credit; however, all final decisions regarding the awarding of credits will be made by the licensing organization to which the credits are submitted. 
  • Certificate of Completion may be used to document participation, but no credit will be conferred.


  • This course expires in April 13, 2020. Participants must complete all necessary course components by this date.
  • This course is included as part of the Advanced Practitioner 102 Certificate. Previous enrollees of the Advanced Practitioner 102 certificate receive automatic enrollment in this course.
  • A previous version of the Communicating Prognosis course is still accessible on ASCO University, though no CE credit is offered.