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Enlightened Healthcare Leadership: Creating an Environment of Trust and Compassion

First few Article Sentences

When I frantically arrived at the hospital from the airport, my son was lying in a hospital bed, his neck securely held with a collar and brace. He had broken his neck, a C-2 fracture, in a mountain bike accident. It was a miracle he was not paralyzed. However, the following two weeks were filled with trepidation and uncertainty as the surgeons weighed in on whether to do surgery or install a halo, which might only delay surgery. I watched the busy nurses run in and out, anxiously attending to all their patients. Due to the pressure, some were lacking patience or compassion. I met the eyes of one harried and brusque nurse and asked her if she had children? She took a moment to proudly tell me about her two adult sons. Looking into her eyes, I asked her, as one mother to another, would she take good care of my son when family members weren’t there? He was the type who would ask little and suffer in silence. The personal connection seemed to touch her, and her resulting care and warm presence became a great comfort. On a very personal level, I saw how compassion made such a huge difference in the care my son received. The experience fortified my ongoing commitment to the power of compassion in the workplace - healthcare and other environments. Miraculously, my son did recover with the halo, and was able to avoid surgery.

Compassionate care is the mission of healthcare organizations and providers, but leaders and managers have many responsibilities. These include--guiding the strategic vision; meeting the organizational goals and metrics; developing procedures and initiatives; handling schedules and work flow; managing budgets, meeting safety and compliance objectives; and hiring and managing people. However, without an underlying foundation of trust and compassion, fulfilling organizational goals is limited. The human relationships of a workplace culture cannot be ignored.

Beal, M. Ed., Danna


Danna Beal, M.Ed.

Workplace Environment

April 9, 2019

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