Recent events in the UK and Australia have shown howpoor patient outcomes are achievedwhen the behaviour of nurses lacks empathy. The UK's Francis Inquiry and the Keogh Report both call for an increase in the ‘caring and compassion’ of health careworkers. A reviewof cases presented to the nurses’ disciplinary tribunal in NewSouth Wales' (Australia) also suggests that the majority of complaints against nurses in this jurisdiction is the result of callousness or lack of empathy. Such events reinforce the need for nurse educators to support nursing students to develop the affective attributes of caring and empathy. This paper considers howto raise the awareness of undergraduate students as a first step to developing empathy by using Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives; and includes a description of how to facilitate interactions with undergraduate nursing students about caring with empathy. Enculturating empathy is an evidence-based method of increasing compassionate care in health organisations generally.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has recognized that errors in communication are one of the leading causes of adverse patient outcomes. Consequently, the WHO developed the High 5s Project to review, among other variables, handover of patients between shifts, professionals, and organizations. Seven countries were involved in the initial project. Australia responded by using the ISOBAR (Identify, Situation, Observations, Background, Agreed plan, and Read-back) tool as a template. However, none of the countries involved considered the social and emotional effects of handover on the staff or patients, although research has demonstrated that attitudes and values can be handed over from one nurse to another during this process. This article shows how the nurse who hands over care from one shift to the next can transfer stigma and labeling and offers suggestions for nurse educators and clinicians to apply national standards and core values to clinical practice and education.