Compassion: A Concept Analysis

Authors


Author contact: schantzm@moravian.edu, with a copy to the Editor: cooperconsulting@socal.rr.com

Abstract

Compassion is a quality deemed sine qua non for nursing and claimed to underpin the profession in its larger-than-life scope. Yet the meaning of the concept “compassion” (or “compassionate care”) is neither clearly defined in nursing scholarship nor widely promoted in the context of contemporaneous everyday nursing practice. The term in its moral dimension has, at best, been downgraded as an optional practice in everyday nursing care and, at worst, dismissed as lofty ideals connected to other disciplines, such as religion and ethics. A concept analysis using Walker and Avant's strategic method as well as Rodgers's evolutionary paradigm was undertaken to clarify the meaning of the concept “compassion” and examine its relevance in the context of everyday nursing practice.

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