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Dr Elaine Lee on compassion

Watch Dr Elaine Lee talk about why healthcare workers need to be compassionate.
ELAINE LEE: I’m Elaine Lee and I’d like to welcome you to our course, Compassionate Care– Getting It Right. As a midwife, it’s my belief that compassionate care is an essential part of ensuring women and their families have the very best experience in what is hopefully the very best of times. Having a baby is such an intense experience that if it happens without care and compassion, an otherwise positive event can be tainted for life. The same is true of any episode of health or social care, because it is often when we need care that we’re at our most vulnerable. We’ve developed this course to consider the following questions. How can we best integrate compassion into health and social care?
What is the best way to deliver this? And what should it look like? I’ll be leading you through week one, where we’ll give you some context about compassionate care. In this course, we want to explore ways to make health care more compassionate, focusing on how we can collectively use improvement science methods to make positive change. The National Health Service is seen by many as the ideal model of health provision. But despite its strengths, and its central place in the hearts of the British public, health care in the UK has recently become the focus of serious negative political and media attention around deficits in care and compassion.
These deficits of damaged trust have become the focus of media coverage, but this course takes a different perspective. We want to look at what makes care effective and compassionate, why do things go right, and what is best practice in compassionate care? How can we make things better? But we’re going to start with the background of this recent scrutiny, so that we understand the importance of getting it right, and the consequences of getting it wrong. In the following step, we’ve prepared a timeline for you to highlight some of the reports, campaigns, and stories that have surfaced in the last five years about care and compassion.
It isn’t a comprehensive list, but it contains the key reports and incidents that have contributed to the current debate. As a group, we will consider this list and discuss why these situations occur, and how we can use evidence and best practice to avoid them in the future. We encourage you to look around at your own pace, skim through to get an idea of what has happened, click through to the videos, and the reports that interest you most. We don’t expect you to read every word, or watch every minute. Rather, we hope that you’ll think about these stories in the context of your own experiences. Ask yourself, how does this happen?
And what can I do about it in my own practice? What do I need to know as a patient or as a loved one? We’ll discuss these key questions, as we move through the course.
In this video, Dr. Elaine Lee gave you some information about topic for this first week.
On the course, we’ll be using a letter of good care to lead you through each week. By observing how real people – patients and their families – comment on the care they receive, we will think about what compassionate care is, and how we can improve the way it is provided.
Throughout the course, there are links to articles and other resources. These are not all required reading, but are provided to you in case you want to further explore a particular topic. Access these optional materials based on what appeals to you and the amount of time you have to spend.
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Compassionate Care: Getting it Right

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