What is Compassion Fatigue?


Specialized training builds resiliency against a little-known workplace hazard called compassion fatigue.

Toronto, Ontario, January 3, 2012 – Trauma often strikes twice. It spreads. Counsellors, police officers, nurses, doctors, paramedics, and social workers help people cope with trauma: And compassion fatigue awaits as an occupational hazard. Symptoms include feelings of anxiety, dread of working with certain clients, depression, diminished sense of purpose, and a loss of work-life balance. In short, there is a cost to caring for others.

Compassion-fatigue prevention, training trauma professionals into traumatologists, is a recent occurrence. The term traumatologist has traditionally been used to describe a branch of medicine dealing with physical wounds. Only recently has it been applied to working with the emotional aspects of trauma survivors. Traumatologists include a wide range of professionals including counsellors aiding plane crash survivors, 911-operators sending help to the scene of an accident, emergency responders investigating a sexual assault, or a nurse on an oncology ward. All these professionals deal with people suffering from the worst kinds of trauma–and they need specialized training to offer the best services.

The Traumatology Institute (Canada), offers a cutting-edge program for traumatologist training. Dr. Anna Baranowsky, founding director, has worked with many professionals who were overwhelmed with exposure to other people’s pain. She teaches participants how to:

  • Become skilled in offering care for trauma survivors while enhancing self-care
  • Identify compassion-fatigue symptoms
  • Build resiliency against compassion fatigue
  • Recover from compassion fatigue
  • Develop best practices for helping trauma survivors

Interested participants could include counsellors, psychologists, social workers, psychiatrists, clergy, employee assistance professionals, clinical supervisors and other helping professionals. On-site training can be arranged anywhere in Canada.

Are you at risk? Learn more about Compassion Fatigue and our courses at www.psychink.com.

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Dr. Anna Baranowsky, founding director of the Traumatology Institute (Canada), is a psychologist who works with trauma survivors.

For more information contact us