NHS Manchester University

Welcome to SAGE & THYME ®

SAGE & THYME: a communication skills workshop about listening to people who are worried.


‘SAGE & THYME’ is a mnemonic that provides a memorable structure for conversations, based on the evidence behind effective communication skills: Setting – Ask – Gather – Empathy – Talk – Help - You – Me – End.  

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The SAGE & THYME foundation level workshop is taught to 30 participants in 3 hours using three trained SAGE & THYME facilitators, using group work, a presentation and conversation rehearsals.

Find out more about  the SAGE & THYME foundation level workshop

There are over 10 publications on SAGE & THYME.

See the papers, reports, independent evaluations and textbooks on SAGE & THYME

The SAGE & THYME foundation level workshop has been adopted by over 60 NHS Trusts, CCGs, charities, councils, universities and hospices around the UK.

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See which organisations run the workshop

Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (MFT) in collaboration with TRUSTECH, teaches (via the SATFAC course) and licences other organisations to deliver SAGE & THYME foundation level workshops to their staff, students and volunteers.

Find out about running the SAGE & THYME foundation level workshop in your organisation

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The SAGE & THYME for advance care planning workshop (S&T ACP) was developed with the Lancashire and South Cumbria Cancer Network.  It teaches effective communication skills to open an advance care planning conversation, and is suitable for GPs, community matrons and other staff who have experience of advance care planning.  

Find out more about SAGE & THYME ACP

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Using SAGE & THYME model

"It's safe, powerful and works!"

Fiona Williams, Macmillan Nurse, Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Latest news

New presentation and packs

7 January 2019

For the start of 2019, the SAGE & THYME Foundation Level workshop has been revised and updated, following consultation with a number of SAGE & THYME facilitators.

The changes include:

  • making the SAGE & THYME explanation clearer
  • having less focus on healthcare and patients (as the workshop is attended by non-clinical people too such as hospice volunteers); and
  • improving the materials in the delegate packs (including a new handout on using the SAGE & THYME structure in conversations).

Organisations running the workshop now have 3 months (until the end of March 2019) to transition over to using the new presentation in all the workshops they run.

The revised presentation (which includes new 'stick' men) explains each step of SAGE & THYME more clearly and a number of SAGE & THYME facilitators have contacted us about how much they like it!

SAGE & THYME Foundation Level workshop slide

Read the full news story here.