A successful nursing career requires more than just skills and certifications; you also need patience, kindness, and compassion. These traits help you develop meaningful and effective relationships with every patient in your care. Compassion allows you to comfort and communicate with your patients more effectively. It also makes the medical care you provide much easier for all involved. When your patients trust you to treat them kindly and fairly, they also trust you to deliver the level of care they need throughout their visit. Improve your patient relationships and your overall work-life by practicing these key components of compassionate patient care.
Communication is a central part of any professional relation, but it’s essential in the healthcare field. Patients often have a lot of questions, concerns, and uncertainty regarding their condition and upcoming treatment. Some patients might not even know how to start asking their questions. Effective communication skills promote an open, honest environment for your patients to voice these worries. By being open to questions and providing thorough but understandable answers, you ease your patients’ concerns and equip them with the knowledge they need to feel comfortable in your care.
Additional recommended reading: How Becoming A Per Diem Nurse Gave Me A Work-Life Balance
Empathy takes compassion a step further. In addition to being kind, you should also strive to be understanding. Put yourself in your patients’ shoes. Try to see where they’re coming from and how that informs their current thoughts and feelings. Empathy should be a part of every patient interaction, no matter how stressed or busy you are. Take the time to actively listen to a patient’s worries and fears. Learn how to deliver bad news with empathy. Most importantly, express your understanding. This will help your patient know that you are listening and genuinely care about their well-being.
You can’t take care of your patients if you don’t first take care of yourself. One of the key components of compassionate patient care is giving yourself the space you need to preserve your own well-being. Don’t let your professional life overrun your personal life. Take the necessary time off to care for your family, recuperate, and avoid burnout in your career. Look out for your own physical and emotional needs, and treat yourself with the same compassion you offer your patients. The healthier you are, the more energy and skill you can bring to your practice every day.
Additional recommended reading: Nurse Life: How To Achieve A Work-Life Balance