Date of Conferral
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
Compassion fatigue is a secondary stress reaction that results from providing care to those undergoing traumatic life events. Frequent exposure to dying patients with complex medical concerns has been identified as a contributing factor to compassion fatigue and resultant turnover among hospice nurses. The purpose of this project was to assess whether the provision of education to hospice nurses regarding compassion fatigue resulted in a demonstrable improvement in their levels of compassion fatigue. Watson's theory of human caring and Roy's adaptation model provided the theoretical foundation for this project. The practice-focused question for this project asked whether a reduction in compassion fatigue among hospice nurses would result after providing them with educational material focused on compassion fatigue. Twenty-three hospice nurse participants were administered Stamm's Professional Quality of Life Scale to measure their compassion fatigue levels before and after being presented with an educational booklet. Scores for this project were compared using a before-and-after quality improvement design and percent difference to measure the impact of the educational offering. Results demonstrated an 8.6% reduction in compassion fatigue among the hospice nurse participants, indicating that educational interventions support a positive effect in reducing compassion fatigue. Positive social change might result from this project by improving nurses' awareness of the need for self-care that contributes to resiliency and prevention of compassion fatigue.