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Aust Crit Care. 1996 Dec;9(4):121-7.

Levels of empathy of critical care nurses.

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  • 1School of Nursing, Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences, Deakin University.


Empathy represents an essential element for effective caring and therefore enhances the goals and rationale of nursing care. The focus of this study was the level of empathy possessed by critical care nurses, in relation to their gender, years of experience in critical care nursing, level of formal education and their current position. This descriptive correlational study utilised the Empathy Construct Rating Scale (ECRS) in order to measure empathy. The study revealed that critical care nurses possess moderately well-developed levels of empathy. No statistically significant relationships were found between gender, years of experience in critical care, level of formal education and current position and levels of empathy. The conclusion of the study was that further research is required to explore the concept of empathy within the context of critical care nursing, and in particular the meaning and significance of empathy to critical care nurses.

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