Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Andrea Boyle, PhD, FNAP
Patricia Harris, PhD, RN
Compassion fatigue comes from the physical, emotional, and psychological impact of helping others through stressful and traumatic experiences. It is a form of fatigue linked to burnout and secondary traumatic stress. Many nurses are vulnerable to compassion fatigue from repeated exposure to the trauma of their patients. While compassion fatigue has been a continuing issue, the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the risk and number of nurses developing compassion fatigue. This can affect patient care, workplace and personal relationships, and lead to development of more serious mental health issues.
To investigate the effects of compassion fatigue on the registered nursing population and identify practices of techniques that alleviate compassion fatigue in nurses. A literature review of past research will be completed and a proposal that illustrates a further study is provided.
Summary of Findings
Through review of the research, various screening tools were identified which determined if a nurse was experiencing compassion fatigue. Intervention methods were used by nurses to provide beneficial outcomes for participants, which improved their mental health. Methods included educational programs, mindfulness techniques, and self-care skills.
Through a mixed-method study that employs quantitative and qualitative methods, the proposed study will investigate effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on compassion fatigue and bedside nurses. The researchers intend to use self-report surveys and interviews to find common themes within the information collected from participants.