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Course Overview

Showing an understanding of a patient’s situation is one of the most important relationship-building skills that a healthcare provider can have. This is widely recognised in healthcare: the NHS in the UK recruits for compassion as one of its core values, and medical schools look for this in applicants at admissions interviews.

This course will help you develop an empathic practice that is individualised and attuned to the needs of all patients. You will learn about different types of empathy, explore non-verbal cues, and understand key opportunities for showing empathy in clinical care.

  • What is empathy?
  • The importance of empathy in healthcare
  • Empathetic opportunities and responses
  • The challenges of showing empathy
  • Building resilience

The course is suitable for anybody engaged in healthcare who interacts with patients and would like to develop their empathic practice. This may include undergraduate students undertaking medical or healthcare-focused degrees, or even those looking to work in healthcare or applying to study healthcare qualifications. The learning outcomes for this course are transferable across all healthcare specialties and can be applied worldwide regardless of the type of the health care system.

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to…
  • Describe the difference between empathy and sympathy
  • Explore the use of emotional and cognitive empathy
  • Explore the importance of empathy in healthcare
  • Identify empathic opportunities
  • Reflect on verbal and non-verbal empathic responses
  • Discuss the challenges of being empathic as a healthcare professional
  • Identify the importance of self-awareness and building resilience for empathic practice