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Psychology for Nursing & Healthcare Professionals: Developing Compassionate Care

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’This book is suitable for all pre-and post-registration students and lecturers especially when topics related to Care and Compassion are taught in the curriculum.’

Title: Psychology for Nursing & Healthcare Professionals: Developing Compassionate Care

Author: Sue Barker

Publisher: Sage 

Reviewer: Andrew Southgate, Senior Lecturer and School of Nursing Lead for Internationalisation

What was it like? 

This book is a real gem as it can enable healthcare practitioners to explore a range of theoretical psychological perspectives in way that is accessible and engaging. The introduction defines psychology and explores physiological as well as psychodynamic, behavioural, cognitive and humanistic approaches. This provides a useful foundation to help readers connect with the contents of the chapters that follow. There is a clear focus on compassionate care throughout the book. Scenarios reflecting real situations that healthcare professionals may encounter support the concepts and topics discussed. It is encouraging that the text is not limited to a single profession, which is reflected in the variety of scenarios. This supports the use of the book for Inter Professional Education as the scenarios and case studies can be explored from a range of different perspectives.

What were the highlights?

The chapter, “Understanding Suffering” was particularly inspiring to read. It explores health and illness concepts from a historical perspective and relates these to theoretical perspectives. Another engaging chapter was “Maintaining a Culture of Compassionate Care”. Given the current emphasis on leadership and compassion, this is timely chapter exploring leadership and management in relation to delivering compassionate care. It also critically discusses the role of Mentorship, Preceptorship and Clinical Supervision in this context. However, all of the chapters are valuable and provide critical insight into the topics explored.

Strengths & weaknesses

All the chapters are well referenced and incorporate a range of learning activities. These include reflection, mindfulness and critical thinking activities and case studies. This allows the text to become part of a blended learning or distance learning module. In addition, incorporating content into “flipped classroom” activities is possible. Furthermore, the quotes at the start of each chapter are thought provoking and can stimulate debate and discussion in seminars.

Who should read it?  

Each chapter commences with a succinct overview followed by clear learning objectives. Diagrams, images, tables are used effectively throughout the book; although some of these may not appeal to all readers. Each chapter concludes with a summary and useful guidance for further reading. The chapters are presented in a visually appealing way, which allows key elements within them to be located with ease. The structure of the book allows each chapter to be accessed as standalone reading. As a result, the book can link to a range of modules taught to healthcare practitioners during their education. This therefore makes the book good value for money! This book is suitable for all pre-and post-registration students and lecturers especially when topics related to Care and Compassion are taught in the curriculum.

psychology for nursing and healthcare professionals

psychology for nursing and healthcare professionals


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