In honor of National Nurses Week, it’s a time for us to celebrate and recognize the vital role nurses play in healthcare today. Their impact on our communities, patients and families is indisputable. Nurses are the backbone of patient care, and every day they are challenged with coordinating medication, meals, hygiene care, discharges and more, all while navigating a myriad of logistical hurdles.
10 Caritas Processes
One leader in the field of nursing made a tremendous impact on improving patient care and providing a structure for effectively addressing patient needs. Jean Watson, the founder and director of the Watson Caring Science Institute and distinguished professor emerita and dean emerita at the University of Colorado’s Denver College of Nursing, developed the 10 Caritas Processes following years of research. The word caritas, stemming from Christian love of human kind or charity, goes right to the heart of what Watson passionately believes: “Caring is the essence of nursing.” Watson’s 10 Caritas Processes are considered the essential components of professional nursing practices today.
Watson’s fourth carative factor emphasizes the importance of communication with patients: The development of a trusting relationship includes congruence, empathy and warmth. The strongest tool a nurse has is his or her mode of communication, which helps establish a rapport with patients, ensures the care is effective and keeps patients safe. This includes both verbal and nonverbal communication and effective listening to connote empathetic understanding.
Providing Compassionate Care when Facing Communication Barriers
Providing compassionate care means understanding patients and being able to communicate effectively with them in their native language. If there are communication barriers, nurses should have ready access to language services. Video remote interpreting (VRI) is one option that connects nurses with medically qualified interpreters in less than 30 seconds at the point of care.
VRI provides an option for nurses that does not need to be prescheduled, is one-touch, hands-free and can be used across any clinical environment. It can support conversations with a patient in nearly every healthcare setting—from acute care, patient education and medication dosages to checking vitals and providing hygiene care. The devices and software were developed with nurses’ workflow in mind, providing the ability to see both verbal and nonverbal forms of communication, enact a privacy screen, conference in a family member or retrieve a clarification from a consulting doctor. VRI enables nurses to immediately provide empathetic, compassionate care while aiding in communication. For more information about our VRI services, see here.