It seems like compassion fatigue (and its sisters, vicarious trauma and burnout) don’t get nearly enough attention in our professional circles. But really, they should–a recent study found that 85% of emergency department nurses surveyed reported moderate to high levels of compassion fatigue. I’d be interested in what the results would look like if they surveyed a group of forensic clinicians.
Many people have read and liked Trauma Stewardship; I personally enjoyed parts, could leave other parts entirely. But it’s a worthwhile read (and I think if you ever wanted to have a book discussion with your team, this would be a good selection). If you’re not talking about it with your colleagues (and not just clinician colleagues), it’s time. Chances are good someone you know is struggling with this. And it might be one of the top 3 issues impacting staff retention in our programs right now.