Hear from Your Instructor

Important information for healthcare providers seeking effective ways of communicating sensitive or complicated information to patients

A healthcare professional’s ability to clearly and compassionately communicate information is key to a successful patient–practitioner relationship. At times, this information will be difficult or upsetting news that will change the patient’s life, and although most providers communicate effectively, there is increasing evidence that a large number of patients remain unhappy around how life-changing news was shared with them. It is essential to understand that the effects of grief and trauma need to be tied to the basic principles of communicating complicated news that is often traumatic and life changing.

Healthcare professionals are trained to deal with various clinical situations, but each individual along the care continuum arrives at their own communication style through anecdotal training and experience, which creates inconsistencies, liabilities, and potentially negative experiences for patients and practitioners. Many health care providers acknowledge that in the crush of time and administrative pressure, the human side of care can be lost when communicating complicated news.

The Complex Conversations in Healthcare: Communicating Effectively with Patients and Families training is designed to fill those gaps in many provider training programs and apply best practices for successful communication strategies in the face of conveying complex news.

Continuing Education

Please refer to the Continuing Medical Education section at the bottom of this page for information on CMEs available for medical professionals.

Please refer to the Continuing Education section for information on continuing education credentials available to psychologists, social workers, mental health counselors, and doulas.

Group Rates

Click here for information on discounted rates for groups!


Available in days
days after you enroll
  Section 1: Communicating Complicated News in General
Available in days
days after you enroll
  Section 2: Grief and Trauma
Available in days
days after you enroll
  Section 3: Communicating Complicated News in Perinatal Loss
Available in days
days after you enroll
  Section 4: Recommended Adaptations to Existing Models
Available in days
days after you enroll
Available in days
days after you enroll

Continuing Medical Education (CME)

The American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) has reviewed Complex Conversations in Healthcare and deemed it acceptable for up to 2.00 Enduring Materials, Self-Study AAFP Prescribed credits. Term of Approval is from 02/06/2024 to 02/06/2025. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

AAFP Prescribed credit is accepted by the American Medical Association as equivalent to AMA PRA Category 1 credit(s)™ toward the AMA Physician's Recognition Award. When applying for the AMA PRA, Prescribed credit earned must be reported as Prescribed, not as Category 1.

Continuing Education (CE)

Seleni Psychology Counseling and Support, PLLC is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #SW-0477.

Seleni Psychology Counseling and Support, PLLC is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Psychology as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed psychologists #PSY-0095.

Seleni Psychology Counseling and Support, PLLC has been approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6950. Seleni Psychology Counseling and Support is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.

All continuing education trainings offered by Seleni Psychology Counseling and Support PLLC can be utilized for DONA International recertification requirements.

Professionals who are not members of the above organizations or professions are often still eligible to earn the CE credits they need by training with Seleni. Most state licensure boards and many national professional organizations grant reciprocity for eligible training programs, and we encourage professionals to check with your home state board and/or professional organization regarding its policies on reciprocity prior to enrollment.

If you have any questions, please call (212) 939-7200 or email us at [email protected].

About Your Instructor

Dr. Manzella comes to the Seleni Institute with extensive experience as a clinician, administrator, and professor of psychology. For more than 20 years, Dr. Manzella maintained a private practice in New York City where she provided psychotherapy and supervision in several areas, including grief and bereavement, her specialty.

Dr. Manzella specializes in working with parents after miscarriage, stillbirth, and child loss. Her clinical work also includes helping women and couples navigate fertility challenges as well as the complexities of perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. Her focus is on helping women and couples find ways to draw on their strengths and take the next steps that are right for them. Dr. Manzella is also an expert on the relationship between loss and trauma.

Dr. Manzella earned both her master's degree in clinical psychology and doctorate in counseling psychology from New York University. She carried out her doctoral dissertation research at Beth Israel Medical Center hospice, with postdoctoral supervision in grief and bereavement work.

Dr. Manzella also has had specialized training at Postpartum Support International, the Postpartum Stress Center, and the Beck Institute for Cognitive Therapy. Dr. Manzella was named a Fellow in Thanatology: Death, Dying and Bereavement by the Association of Death Educators and Counselors. She has completed a three-year term as a member of their board of directors. She continues to teach at New York University and makes her home in New York City.