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J Health Care Poor Underserved. 2013 Aug;24(3):1235-46. doi: 10.1353/hpu.2013.0148.

The development and evaluation of a compassion scale.


Compassion is the capacity for being moved by suffering of others and wanting to help alleviate it. Compassion may mediate health benefits and hazards of social networks/relationships. The monitoring/management of level of compassion across social networks/relationships may be critical to health benefits' preservation and social networks/relationships' health hazards prevention. We developed and evaluated the psychometric properties of 10-item self-report measure of compassion among 310 respondents from the University and surrounding communities. The mean total score was 3.62 (SD=1.09). The item-to-total correlations ranged from 0.50-0.71. The mean inter-item correlation was 0.33. The internal consistency was 0.82. The scale correlated well with Sprecher and Fehr's Compassionate Love Scale (r=0.66; p=.000). Two factors measuring same construct explained 57% of sample variance. The scale is user-friendly, easy to score, and characterized by good psychometric properties. It can be used to foster understanding of the impact of compassion on disease and outcomes across social networks/relationships.

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