The Effect of Education on Compassion Fatigue as Experienced by Staff Nurses
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Historically, nursing has been perceived as a highly rewarding profession. Yet, due to the increasing complexity of today’s healthcare, nurses are faced with greater challenges in their work environments. Additionally, registered nurses who work in tertiary care settings are exposed to disturbing patient situations that can be taxing on psychological health. Some examples include trauma, death, abuse, or chronic disease. Joinson (1992) described this experience as compassion fatigue (CF) and explains that those who experience CF may have symptoms such as headaches, short attention span, or fatigue. The purpose of this EBP project was to increase awareness about CF risks, symptoms, and coping mechanisms through educational training for registered nurses in an effort to decrease levels of CF. Educational training was presented to medical-surgical staff nurses at a 526 bed level II trauma center in Northern Indiana. Results were analyzed utilizing one-way repeated measures ANOVA, which demonstrated no statistical significance. However, a reduction in CF scores was noted overtime: pre-intervention M = 20.7, immediate post-intervention M = 20.6, 1-month post-intervention M = 18.8, and 3-month post-intervention M = 17.9. The small sample size (n = 10) potentially impacted these results. It is recommended that future studies incorporate larger sample sizes.
Zehr, Katie, "The Effect of Education on Compassion Fatigue as Experienced by Staff Nurses" (2015). Graduate Academic Symposium. Paper 5.
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