Navigation Links
Schwartz Center proposes agenda to promote compassionate care
Date:9/8/2011

Boston (September 8, 2011) In light of a national survey showing that only about half of patients believe the U.S. health care system is a compassionate one, the Schwartz Center for Compassionate Healthcare today proposed an agenda for improving such care in an article in the September issue of Health Affairs, the nation's leading health policy journal.

"For most clinicians, compassionate care matters because it is fundamental to the practice of medicine, ethically sound, and humane," according to lead author Beth Lown, MD, medical director of the Schwartz Center and an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. "However, there is also strong evidence that compassionate care improves health outcomes and quality of life, increases patient satisfaction, and lowers health care costs. Particularly as our health care system faces such intense pressure to reduce costs, we must make sure that this critically important element of health care is not lost."

To ensure that all patients receive compassionate care, the Schwartz Center recommends that:

  • The federal government include compassionate care measures in national quality standards and create a Compassionate Care Index (CCI) to measure the level of compassionate care being delivered by health care institutions and individual providers;
  • The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute created by the Affordable Care Act fund comparative effectiveness research to determine which aspects of compassionate care have the greatest impact on health outcomes, quality of life, and patient satisfaction;
  • New health care payment systems, including the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' proposed value-based purchasing system, reward providers for the compassionate care they provide to patients and families; and
  • Comprehensive training programs be developed to help health care professionals and trainees develop the necessary skills required for compassionate care.

The Schwartz Center's recommendations are in response to the results of a national survey of 800 patients and 510 doctors that it conducted in the fall of 2010. The survey found that only 53 percent of patients and 58 percent of doctors rate the U.S. health care system as a compassionate one, despite strong agreement among patients and doctors that compassionate care is important to successful medical treatment and can even make a difference in whether a patient lives or dies.

The survey also found that more than two-thirds of patients (67%) and more than half of doctors (55%) are concerned that the changes taking place in the U.S. health care system, including the increased emphasis on controlling costs, will affect the ability of doctors, nurses, and other health care professionals to provide compassionate care. At the time of the survey, more than half of the doctors surveyed (53%) said they were already spending less time with patients than they wanted.

According to the Schwartz Center, compassionate care is defined by the following four essential characteristics:

  1. Empathy, emotional support, and a desire to relieve a patient's distress and suffering
  2. Effective communication at all stages of a patient's illness and treatment
  3. Respecting patients' and families' desires to participate in making health care decisions
  4. Knowing and relating to the patient as a whole person, not just a disease

"There is a great deal of emphasis in health care these days on providing 'patient-centered' care, but care without compassion cannot truly be patient centered," said Dr. Lown, who also works as a general internist at Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

"Health care providers need time to listen to their patients, education in the skills of compassionate care, feedback based on measures of their performance, and leaders and systems that support healing relationships with patients and families," she and her co-authors write.

"Compassion is as important in helping patients manage chronic and acute conditions as it is at the end of life," Dr. Lown added. "To improve quality and reduce costs, compassion should be present in all aspects of our health care system."


'/>"/>

Contact: Petra Langer
petralanger@comcast.net
781-640-0086
The Schwartz Center for Compassionate Healthcare
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Research: Schwartz Center Rounds encourage compassionate health care and better teamwork
2. Second AGA Foundation/Bernard Lee Schwartz Foundation Research Scholar Award presented
3. Schwartzapfel Truhowsky Marcus P.C. Launches Special Legal Aid To The Victims of Medical Negligence And Occupational Injuries
4. World Trade Center-exposed NYC firefighters face increased cancer risk
5. As Venus Williams Bows Out of U.S. Open, Little-Known Disease Takes Center Court
6. Specialized Stroke Centers Deliver on the Weekends
7. Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center to co-lead 1 of 5 NCI-funded proteomics research centers
8. Dartmouth Med School lands $11M grant for regional biomedical research center
9. University of Kentucky Sanders-Brown Center on Aging receives $7 million from NIA
10. Johns Hopkins Evidence-based Practice Center awarded $475,000 project
11. University Hospitals Neuromuscular Center EMG labs awarded accreditation
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:9/19/2017)... ... September 19, 2017 , ... First Choice Emergency Room , ... Howard Ng, as the new Medical Director of its Pflugerville- FM 685 facility. ... Director of our Pflugerville- FM 685 location,” said Dr. Stephen Van Roekel, Reginal Medical ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... ... 2017 , ... The Davidson Institute for Talent Development will ... 27 at a reception in Washington D.C. The recipients received $50,000, $25,000 and ... “I am honored to be a Davidson Fellow Laureate,” said Rishab Gargeya, a ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... ... 19, 2017 , ... MarkeTouch Media has partnered with fred’s ... a modern design with a more streamlined user experience and is designed to ... app includes hundreds of digital coupons that can be clipped to a customer’s ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... ... , ... TransLuma is a set of dissolving transitions created for use within Final Cut ... luminance of a scene without the use of keyframes. Choose to bleed away ... , TransLuma allows editors to gradually dissolve away the light in a scene to reveal ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... ... , ... A September 7 article on BBC News describes new ... world’s most common and least expensive medications, may be able to stimulate stem cells ... California Dental Group and Calabasas Dental Care says that, while it’s likely to be ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/1/2017)... , Sept. 1, 2017 Michael ... Solutions, Inc , highlights opportunities for growth in his ... report that Marlin Equity is seeking a buyer for ... annual award-winning 22-year-old healthcare solutions Value Added Reseller and ... "As the healthcare market ...
(Date:9/1/2017)...  Bayer will present the latest research from across its ... (ESMO) 2017 Congress, September 8-12 in Madrid, Spain ... clinical data on Bayer,s marketed portfolio and late-stage compounds as ... "We value the opportunity to ... at ESMO," said Carsten Brunn , Head of Pharmaceuticals, ...
(Date:8/29/2017)... ivWatch, LLC, the leading provider of continuous monitoring devices for the ... an Innovative Technology contract from Vizient, Inc., the largest member-driven health ... ... detection of peripheral IV infiltration and extravasation events ... The Innovative Technology contract was awarded to ivWatch based on ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: