Empathic Leadership for Healthcare Providers

“The foundation for providing sustainable, quality care is simple: compassion. If we want to keep healthy people out of hospitals, support the most vulnerable of patients or those with long-term issues, and lower health care costs, compassion must be at the heart of all these interactions.

Jeffrey Brenner, MD
Senior Vice President of Integrated Health and Human Services , UnitedHealthcare Community & State

Empathic Leadership for Healthcare Providers

“The foundation for providing sustainable, quality care is simple: compassion. If we want to keep healthy people out of hospitals, support the most vulnerable of patients or those with long-term issues, and lower health care costs, compassion must be at the heart of all these interactions.

Jeffrey Brenner, MD
Senior Vice President of Integrated Health and Human Services , UnitedHealthcare Community & State

Compassion and Empathy in Healthcare
are the Foundations of Wellbeing


2021 has seen the rise of what some people refer to as a compassion crisis in the health care system in the United States. Compassion and empathy in healthcare are the foundation of wellbeing for providers, staff, patients, residents, families, and care partners.

Research has found:

  • Only 0.4%–0.6% of physician communications with patients are expressions of empathy or compassion.
  • A stronger culture of compassion could create physiological effects that reduce employees’ absenteeism.
  • Compassion of the nursing aides was associated with lower depression in nursing home residents.
  • In one study of more than 3,000 patients in primary care, the researchers found that without compassion, patients will not feel fully empowered.
  • The emotional culture of the health care facility has a strong association with how employees treated their patients, the patients’ experience, and even patient outcomes. As you might anticipate, employees were not able to effectively show compassion to their patients if they didn’t experience it in their work environment themselves.
  • Another survey of 1,400 U.S. adults found that nearly two-thirds had an experience as a patient in which HCP compassion was lacking, and 93% believed that a lack of compassion lowered the quality of care.
  • There is also compelling data that the absence of compassion, manifested by depersonalization, emotional exhaustion, and compassion fatigue among HCPs, is associated with lower quality of care and increased risk of harm to patients through medical errors.
  • Empathetic and compassionate care has been demonstrated to be associated with improved clinical outcomes for patients, therefore, empathy and compassion training curricula may be an effective therapy to reduce physician burnout.
  • In a study of trauma patients, the odds of a patient-reported good outcome were four times higher when the physician was rated as having high compassion (there already is compelling data that compassion can be effective for the treatment of PTSD).

 

Contact us for more information

The Empathic Leadership for Healthcare Providers Course will teach you:

  • Offer connecting empathic responses that balance multiple perspectives when interacting with staff, residents, and patients to contribute to a stronger culture of compassion and empowerment.
  • Develop awareness of one’s reactive patterns so that communication pitfalls are avoided and human connection is established and maintained even under stress.
  • Use the Empathic Conversation Blueprint to navigate difficult issues such as vaccination acceptance.
  • Facilitate empathy-based decisions that attend to core group needs, supporting people being heard and promoting a culture of inclusion.
  • Bring a trauma-informed approach to compassion and empathy.
  • Decrease toxic blame by rewriting the narratives so that burnout, depression, and absenteeism are reduced.
  • Create greater self-awareness of one’s implicit biases to effectively show compassion in different conversational contexts.
  • Gain familiarity with main Social Justice components and learn how they interface with Empathic Leadership.

I love the videos, especially those in session 1 about how this all connects to our biology. The combination of reading, videos, homework and discussion with our educators and our peers is very effective as an approach to adult, remote learning

Past Participant in the Course

The concepts help me to take a pause and unfold my thoughts and emotions before responding to a situation. It has given me tools to be a more empathetic leader.


Past Participant in the Course

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