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Authors

  1. Jenkins, Belinda BSN, RN, CEN
  2. Warren, Nancy A. PhD, RN

Abstract

Walker and Avant's method of concept analysis was used to delve into the initial understanding of compassion fatigue, a relatively new concept being explored with critical care nurses and other health care professionals. The term was originally used in 1992 involving research exploring burnout experienced by critical care nurses when a trend emerged where nurses appeared to have lost their "ability to nurture." The term has since been used synonymously with secondary traumatic stress disorder. Two important goals exist for this article: First, theoretically to conduct a concept analysis of compassion fatigue, thereby providing information for critical care nurses to understand the concept as a universal human experience. Second, from a caring perspective, identifying the effects related to critical care nurses provides an opportunity to address physical and somatic consequences of compassion fatigue that will ultimately become important to nursing practice, education, and research.