Family Donation Conversation Core Module

The core FDC workshop is a two day workshop which provides training to a range of health professionals working in organ, eye and tissue donation. The workshops aim to provide increased knowledge, understanding and skills in having conversations with potential donor families and ensuring that families are provided with sufficient information to make a proactive, informed and enduring donation decision.

The core FDC workshop aims to provide participants with an understanding of:

  • Specific elements of family care and communication
  • The range of reactions experienced by families who receive catastrophic news
  • The key factors in the process, timing and sequence of the donation conversation
  • Best practices for supporting families in grief and in the donation conversation
  • Strategies to ensure informed and enduring decision making about donation

Intensive care medical trainees are required by the College of Intensive Care Medicine (CICM) to complete the core FDC workshop as part of their mandatory training requirements. Trainees are required to complete the CICM elearning program entitled 'Brain Death and Organ Donation' before attending the core FDC workshop. There is also an expectation that all intensive care medical trainees have read and understood 'The ANZICS Statement on Death and Organ Donation' Edition 3.2 2013, prior to attending the core FDC workshop. This statement is available here.


The core FDC workshop was developed by the OTA with the Gift of Life Institute (GoLI) in Philadelphia, US (an international leader in education on family communication), and tailored specifically to the Australian environment. The OTA has worked closely with Australian clinicians and GoLI to ensure that the core FDC workshop was designed to meet Australia's needs.


Core FDC workshops have been facilitated across Australia since March 2012 and were initially facilitated by the expert GoLI trainers from Philadelphia. Workshops are now being facilitated by a national group of Australian trainers who have been specifically trained by GoLI and include experienced intensivists, nurses, grief specialists and donor coordinators from across the DonateLife Network and Australia. The workshop will be reviewed every two years with peak bodies and was last reviewed in 2014. the next review will be 2016.


If you are interested in attending a workshop, please contact the DonateLife Agency in the host state or territory for details about the workshop. If you are a DonateLife Network staff member, consider contacting the Education Coordinator in your jurisdiction to discuss potential support to attend a workshop in another jurisdiction.


You can view the workshop schedule here.


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the facts about organ and
tissue donation

  • Frequently asked questions
  • Understanding donation


and register on the Australian
Organ Donor Register

  • Register your decision


your donation decision with family and friends

  • Who needs to know?
  • How to start the discussion