Compassion in Healthcare
Theological and philosophical investigations of compassion in healthcare, if they are to serve the public good effectively, must be conducted in long-term conversation with colleagues working in healthcare. The social and political context within which this research operates is complex. The challenge of maintaining compassion and the negative consequences of its erosion for patients, individual practitioners, the NHS, and society is at the front of the public’s mind. At institutional and individual levels, there are issues of patient engagement, empowerment and health outcomes; practitioner attitudes, resilience and burnout; rising levels of complaints and litigation – all this amidst a complex ethos formed by measurement, political imperatives and financial considerations (to name but a few factors).
Dr Joshua Hordern is working in partnership with the Royal Society of Medicine Open Section, represented by the Open Section’s president, Dr Andrew Papanikitas. Activities in 2014 include a series of workshops and the development of a web presence with a view to a focus on education and future research. The goal is mutual benefit both to this research project and to the Royal Society of Medicine Open Section in its goals of serving clinicians, researchers and the broader public by sharing perspectives between academia and practice.