Addressing Compassion Fatigue Among Caregivers



Addressing Compassion Fatigue Among Caregivers

Grand Canyon University HLT-364


Addressing Compassion Fatigue Among Caregivers

The shortage of nurses in the United States (U.S) and other nations globally has contributed to several current problems in the healthcare field, including fatigue and poor quality of services. According to Lavoie‐Tremblay et al. (2016), the quality of care offered in healthcare organizations determines the satisfaction of the patients. In essence, caregivers and other professionals in the healthcare facilities aim at ensuring that the quality of care results in positive patient outcomes. However, shortage of nurses has prompted most caregivers to work overtime, and often work with a shortage of staff. Most nurses and other caregivers work beyond their shift durations, thereby suffering from fatigue, which harms their ability to perform at the expected levels (O’Mahony, et al., 2018). Some conditions in healthcare organizations negate the ability of the caregivers to provide the best care. After providing the coverage for shifts, some of these nurses are required to do more work than their usual shifts since often they are working with less staff. Therefore, nurses with such experiences work for longer hours, which induce fatigue and compromise the quality of care.

The Description of the Healthcare Administration Issue

Longer working hours, caused by the limited number of caregivers in healthcare facilities, are common in many healthcare systems globally. Management often reacts by adopting policies that induce fatigue among the available caregivers (Kolthoff & Hickman, 2017). Most caregivers to work overtime because the available workforce cannot discharge the duties required with the timeline. In most shifts, the caregivers fail to meet the number required, thereby forcing caregivers from other shifts to provide additional workforce.

The impact of fatigue on the quality of care offered in healthcare organizations continues to encourage a myriad of studies in this area. Some researchers target at developing an intervention whose adoption has the potential to eliminate fatigue among caregivers thus boosting the quality of care (Ball et al., 2017). Caregivers work in shifts with the management requiring these professionals to perform at levels that foster patient satisfaction. Nonetheless, patient satisfaction is only possible when the caregivers follow the treatment procedures and protocols in ways that promote a highly effective decision-making process. In this light, management should not allow caregivers to work beyond the duration of their shifts. In some situations, longer working hours result in compassion fatigue. Al-Majid et al. (2018) defined compassion fatigue as the situation in which nurses are too tired to take part in caring relationships. These researchers also noted that compassion fatigue impacts negatively on the performance of nurses. Fatigue instigates job dissatisfaction and burnout, promoting high turnover rates in healthcare organizations. Since fatigue has numerous serious implications on the quality of care offered in the healthcare facilities, it is imperative to develop an in-depth understanding of possible interventions by conducting evidence-based practice.

Job satisfaction among caregivers determines the quality of services they offer, which consequentially influence patient satisfaction. A study by Dev et al. (2018) revealed that there is a correlation between the quality of care and job satisfaction among caregivers. Job satisfaction among caregivers encourages them to perform at levels that foster attainment of the set objectives and targets. Since patient satisfaction is the primary target of healthcare organizations, the top management has a role in ensuring that the prevailing conditions are conducive to foster job satisfaction among the caregivers thus raising the likelihood of positive patient outcomes. Moreover, Dev et al. (2018) asserted that a relationship exists among the length of the shift, care quality, care left undone, scheduling flexibility, job satisfaction, and patient safety. These researchers investigated the influence of length of shift on the quality of care. They established that a shift duration beyond twelve hours was detrimental to the quality of care offered by the healthcare givers. In particular, the research found that long shift durations compromised the rating of care as much care is left undone by the caregivers.

Resources Needed and the Role They Play in Your Plan

The resources needed to actualize the current project will be funds and personnel. The senior management must see the need to overhaul the bedside reporting procedure. Along with the funds, the key stakeholders will be caregivers, senior management, and patients. The senior leadership in many healthcare systems often adopts strategies intended to improve the quality of care, leading to positive patient outcomes. Therefore, the senior management will be responsible for providing the funds needed to hire additional caregivers, which would see an improvement in the quality of care. Importantly, hiring additional nurses will prevent the occurrence of compassion fatigue among the available caregivers, leading to better outcomes.

Attaining better quality care is contingent upon many variables, including the reporting mechanism, and willingness of the caregivers. Therefore, despite pushing for efficient strategies, some hospitals still fail to guarantee better outcomes and overall patient experiences. Caregivers are responsible for collaborating in the clinical setting, thereby ensuring that the delivered care leads to positive outcomes (Laor-Maayany et al., 2020). Nonetheless, there has been limited patient satisfaction in the various hospital units, including medical and surgical ones, due to poor service delivery. In the U.S. and other nations globally, patient satisfaction is contingent upon a series of scores, which cumulatively determine patient experience in a clinical setting. According to Kolthoff and Hickman (2017), the primary factors that influence patient satisfaction scores include expectations, communication, control, time spent, and appearance. Patients will play a primary role in ensuring smooth integration of caregivers in the new workplace.

External or internal regulations

In the U.S and many nations across the world, the healthcare systems use a series of internal and external regulations to operate. Internally, the senior leadership at the facility develops the regulations needed to dictate operations (Fukumori, et al., 2020). Externally, the caregivers must conduct themselves according to the constitutional provisions and the medical and nursing societies. Each nation has societies that use code of ethics to guide the performance of caregivers. The topic under the discussion is part of quality and safety education for nurses (QSEN) provisions that seek to address interprofessional communication as well as patient satisfaction issues. American Nurses Association (AMA) enforces the core elements of QSEN, which include informatics, quality improvement, safety, evidence-based practice, patient-centred care, and teamwork and collaboration. To attain these competence areas of QSEN, healthcare leaders must implement appropriate strategies essential in preventing poor communication among the primary healthcare providers.

Organizational and Strategical Development Structures

The organization plans to enhance its efficiency levels in the delivery of care to both inpatient and outpatients. Currently, the organization has less nurses, which has been central in propagating compassion fatigue among caregivers. One of the strategic plans to improve the efficacy of the care at the organization is to hire additional caregivers. This way, the available caregivers will encounter less pressure in the clinical setting, encouraging them to perform at high levels. Furthermore, the organization could train the existing caregivers on the efficient ways of handling fatigue. Therefore, the adopted strategies will focus on enhancing satisfaction of the caregivers.

Strategies for Communicating Your Proposed Plan

Both formal and informal communication modalities will be necessary to convey the information. Internally, communication will mainly be through emails, memos, and meetings. Meetings will occur in the HR’s conference hall. While communicating with the community, media will play a major role. Notably, the responsible people could use internet and mainstream media to convey the new changes to the members of the surrounding community.


In essence, hiring additional caregivers in healthcare organizations remain a relevant intervention that could reduce the pressure placed on the few caregivers in the healthcare facility. Therefore, the top management in healthcare organizations has a role in ensuring that the caregivers available in healthcare organizations meet the required staffing ratio, which consequently minimizes the development of compassion fatigue in the available caregivers. As such, attainment of patient satisfaction could be possible.


Al-Majid, S., Carlson, N., Kiyohara, M., Faith, M., & Rakovski, C. (2018). Assessing the degree of compassion satisfaction and compassion fatigue among critical care, oncology, and charge nurses. JONA: The Journal of Nursing Administration, 48(6),310–315. https//

Ball, J., Day, T., Murrells, T., Dall’Ora, C., Rafferty, A. M., Griffiths, P., & Maben, J. (2017). A cross-sectional examination of the association between shift length and hospital nurses job satisfaction and nurse-reported quality measures. BMC Nursing, 16(1), 26–37. https//

Dev, V., Fernando III, A. T., Lim, A. G., & Consedine, N. S. (2018). Does self-compassion mitigate the relationship between burnout and barriers to compassion? A cross-sectional quantitative study of 799 nurses. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 81(7), 81–88.

Fukumori, T., Miyazaki, A., Takaba, C., Taniguchi, S., & Asai, M. (2020). Traumatic events among cancer patients that lead to compassion fatigue in nurses: A qualitative study. Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, 59(2), 254–260.

Kolthoff, K. L., & Hickman, S. E. (2017). Compassion fatigue among nurses working with older adults. Geriatric Nursing, 38(2), 106–109.

Laor-Maayany, R., Goldzweig, G., Hasson-Ohayon, I., Bar-Sela, G., Engler-Gross, A., & Braun, M. (2020). Compassion fatigue among oncologists: the role of grief, sense of failure, and exposure to suffering and death. Supportive Care in Cancer, 28(4), 2025–2031.

Lavoie‐Tremblay, M., Fernet, C., Lavigne, G. L., & Austin, S. (2016). Transformational and abusive leadership practices: Impacts on novice nurses, quality of care and intention to leave. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 72(3), 582–592. https//

O’Mahony, S., Ziadni, M., Hoerger, M., Levine, S., Baron, A., & Gerhart, J. (2018). Compassion fatigue among palliative care clinicians: Findings on personality factors and years of service. American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine®, 35(2), 343–347.

"Is this question part of your assignment? We can help"