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Clinical Empathy: Show Empathy to Patient

Clinical Empathy: Show Empathy to Patient

You feel hurried and irritated. You’re rushing and frustrated.

We’ve been there. Here’s how to show empathy as a nurse practitioner in a clinical environment and express it even when you are not feeling well.

What is Clinical Empathy?

An academic medicine paper defines empathy as: “the distillation or connection of feelings and meanings associated with the patient’s clinical experience while detecting and separating one’s own emotions.”

Empathy is the ability to share and understand another person’s feelings in a health care setting. The doctor-patient connection depends heavily on empathy. To become a licensed practical nurse for practical experience it is also necessary for medical assistant to strengthen their relationship with the patient and demonstrates their concern in the medical field.

Empathy is an Essential Part of the Doctor-patient Relationship:  Medical Communication

What should a doctor do with the patient above who asks for antibiotics? Here’s a good example of showing Empathy towards patients — or not.


You sound like you are feeling awful as a medical professionals! You seem to have caught one of the many horrible viruses going around. Antibiotics won’t work in this case. If I believed an antibiotic would help you with anything except nausea and stomach discomfort, I would prescribe one. It’s frustrating to be sick, I know. But I have a few ideas that may help reduce your symptoms as we wait for the virus.

Lack of Empathy

Antibiotics do not cure viruses. Antibiotics are only given if we’re sure it’s an infection caused by bacteria. Unneeded antibiotics can lead to resistance and even other health problems. In the meantime, nursing assistants can help to give anti-inflammatories and decongestants.

These two responses are not clinically incorrect. They will, however, produce different results. The first validates and acknowledges the patient’s pain, whereas the second robotically states facts. Even if the patient is frustrated, demonstrating sympathy will help build trust in practical nursing. Which response would you like to hear if you were ill? However, private nursing schools or community colleges for vocational nursing licenses help in learning how to avoid frustration and show empathy toward patients in the nursing field.

Related:- How to solve Nurse Scheduling Problem in Healthcare?

Without empathy, the patient might leave angry and still believe that they need antibiotics because you didn’t listen to what they said.

Five Tips to Show Empathy for Patients

Emergency medicine news reported that one Florida doctor had his emergency medicine residents “become patients,” entering the system and interacting with staff. One doctor asked his residents to “become” patients and check vital signs, entering the system and interfacing with a team. Emergency Medicine News told of this.

Even if you have a busy schedule as a vocational nurse, try incorporating these tips into your daily routine. 

1. Make Eye Contact When You Start the Appointment

It is essential to establish eye contact, but electronic medical records make this more difficult. When you ask a question, look up. Continue to comment when you look at the computer to show you are not distracted. Or, better yet, tell first-time patients what you plan to do with the computer.

2. Body Language is Important

Do you ask questions while your hands are on the doorknob or with your arms crossed across your body? Standing? In a healthcare facility, sitting down doesn’t cost extra time and shows you’re not rushed.

3. You Ought to Be Interested in Your Patients

As professional nurses, ask questions to understand your patients beyond the issue they are presenting. How are their symptoms affecting them? You can see their whole picture and make them feel cared for. The prerequisite courses of the hybrid LPN program near me (online classes) from technical school are the best option for enhancing the basic nursing skills to empathize with the human connection to patient care in long-term care facilities.

4. Humanize Your Patient by Recording Details

It’s more than just checking boxes in an electronic medical record in clinical settings. What is impacting their life now? What about a sick mother? A sick mother? You will not only make your patient feel more connected if you ask about it the next time you see them, but you will also be able to show empathy the better you understand their lives.

5. Support Your Patient

Recognize the patient’s feelings and accept their anger and fear. Respond to their medical and emotional needs.

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At Last

To learn practical skills, & basic patient care, understand the scope of practice through clinical practices, and prepare yourself for the NCLEX-PN exam, enroll in an online LPN program (nursing programs) at Verve College of Nursing with background check & completing prior clinical rotations for hands-on experience is the best option for nursing students.