Empathy is evidence-based care
Blue Shield of California Foundation has awarded a grant to IHC to develop a new curriculum to enhance healthcare organizations’ capacity to provide high quality care for patients experiencing symptoms and conditions related to behavioral health and the impact of trauma. The curriculum will be informed by research showing that patient health outcomes are influenced by how patients feel they are treated by their healthcare team members.
IHC’s new training curriculum will guide healthcare team members as they examine their own beliefs and biases that may inhibit compassionate and equitable care for all patients. The curriculum will increase personal self-awareness and offer practical, evidence-based communication skills to enhance patients’ sense of perceived empathy and connectivity, as well as improve employees’ experience of their work. The curriculum will be broadly applicable to all patient interactions, as well as focusing on providing care for those who suffer from conditions that have a long history of stigma and subsequent substandard care, such as mental health and addictive disorders, chronic pain, trauma history, domestic violence and homelessness. This initiative is emblematic of the Foundation’s commitment to health and safety for all.
Drawing on IHC’s decades-long experience developing and conducting experiential communication skills-based training, this program will be developed with the guidance of nationally renowned experts and leaders in safety net clinics in California. IHC’s evidence-based new curriculum will feature brief video vignettes for learning exercises and graduated experiential learning opportunities. Workshops will be piloted in California for eventual roll-out throughout North America. As with other IHC curricula, a companion train-the-trainer (TTT) faculty course will be developed to enable caregiving organizations to sustain training efforts over the long term.
“Building upon the success IHC has already achieved in the realm of patient experience, we’re thrilled to extend their unique approach to engage some of the safety net’s most complex patients,” said Peter Long, PhD, president and CEO of Blue Shield of California Foundation. “Across California, behavioral health challenges and domestic violence negatively impact so many individuals and families. With the launch of this new training program, we can equip our grantees with the tools and skills they need to more effectively address these critical issues.”
About the Institute for Healthcare Communication
IHC advances the quality of healthcare by optimizing the experience and process of healthcare communication. Since 1987 we have designed more than a dozen evidence-based communication skills curricula for healthcare team members including clinicians, non-clinical support staff members, risk managers and entire healthcare teams. IHC’s communication and coaching skills curricula are nationally accredited and widely accepted avenues for improving patient outcomes and satisfaction, enhancing patient adherence and outcomes and fostering greater healthcare team job satisfaction.
About Blue Shield of California Foundation
Blue Shield of California Foundation is one of California’s largest and most trusted grantmaking organizations. Its mission is to improve the lives of California’s most vulnerable populations by making healthcare more accessible and effective, and by ending domestic violence. For additional information about the Foundation’s grantmaking and impact visit: www.blueshieldcafoundation.org