Working as a caregiver is not easy. Add to the difficulty of the job, the frequency of providing care on a daily, hourly, weekly and even yearly basis and you have the perfect recipe for Compassion Fatigue and teammate burnout. This is a serious condition that takes a toll on the mind, body and spirit of a caregiver. Officially, Compassion Fatigue and teammate burnout has been defined as a natural consequence of stress resulting from caring for and helping traumatized or suffering people.

Compassion Fatigue is not limited to just physicians and nurses. In fact, statistics tell us that up to 85% of healthcare workers develop Compassion Fatigue, including the following:

  • Caregivers for dependent people
  • Child Welfare Workers
  • Hospice Workers
  • Physicians and other Care Providers
  • Mental Health Professionals
  • Nurses
  • Paramedics

Atrium Health recognizes that many of the caregivers listed above are a part of our System of care. To help our teammates better understand this serious condition we have provided resources to educate them on how to recognize Compassion Fatigue (Code Lavender), in a teammate or one's self, how to cope with Compassion Fatigue and where to go for help when Compassion Fatigue strikes.

 

Compassion Champions

When a caregiver begins to show signs of Compassion Fatigue, it is identified as a Code Lavender. Code Lavender success rests on the collaborative efforts of Compassion Champions who are embedded in the offices, practices, and units of Atrium Health. The Compassion Champions seek to prevent Burnout/Compassion Fatigue to their designated area by initiating self-compassion practices and helping to create a healing environment. Atrium Health Compassion Champions will number in the hundreds and hopefully in the thousands in our efforts to assist the transformation of our healthcare culture at the grassroots level.