Those of you who’ve been reading my blog will know I’m passionate about communication. Over almost four years and in more than 100 posts, I’ve told you stories about my patients, my practise and my journey to become an optometrist.  I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about communication and reflecting on how we approach new situations.  I’ve come to realise that the worst part of our job is the unknown.  Of course, we all become more confident as we gain experience yet, at the same time, there are hundreds of scenarios that we don’t know how we’ll handle until they happen.  Not only that, we don’t know how the team around us will handle those situations either.

In the last few months, I’ve developed a card game to help optical professionals and those in the process of qualifying hone their communication skills by asking them to imagine themselves in challenging situations.  It’s called Deal with it.

I’ve been really lucky to have met a wonderful optometrist and business person, Sarah, who has helped make my vision a reality.

Here’s a look at the box:


The cards have been designed to challenge players to adapt their communication style to fit the needs of patients with a variety of complex needs and conditions.

The game can be played in groups (for example, as a staff training exercise) or individually (to self test).  When played in groups, discussion and feedback become part of the game, making it a perfect training and team-building exercise for professionals working together in practice.  It can also be used as OSCE preparation or revision.

Each pack contains 56 cards: 1 suggestions card, 50 scenario cards and 5 action cards.  Each scenario card has two different conditions to explore: this generates a total of 500 possible scenario / condition / action combinations so there is plenty of scope for repeat play without repetition.  The action cards have communication tasks on them that cover the entire patient journey.  Games can last minutes or hours, depending on the number of scenario cards used.

If you want to buy a deck of cards or just to learn more, you can visit my website: