P10.12 A Course To Teach Empathy To The Medical Students And Health Professionals In Samsun-Turkey

F. Yaris, M. F. Dikici, F. A. Artiran Igde;
Ondokuzmayis University School of Medicine, Samsun, Turkey.
Fusun Yaris
Ondokuzmayis University School of Medicine
Zip: 55139
Email: fyaris@omu.edu.tr
Phone: 00905422180109
Fax: 00903624576041
Aim: Empathy is important in professionalism. We organized a one day empathy course for medical students and secretaries. We aimed to present the details of the course and assess the effect of this course to increase the empathy of the participants qualitatively.
Method: Since 2008, 706 first year students have taken this course in the communication section of the clinical skills education by the department of Family Medicine. In 2011 we organized same course for the 144 secretaries of the university hospital. The course is one day training program composed of role-play sessions and presentation. In the beginning the participants are asked to discuss the meaning of empathy. Later, all participants are asked to experience as a patient and relative of a patient according to the scenario. They experience blindness with black painted sun glasses, using wheelchair for own and for the friend and deafness. We also put their limb and arm to the cast to create disability. Each participant has each experience in this curriculum and discusses them in the round table. Anxiety scales were used before and after the course. At the end of the session, a presentation about the empathy has been provided. The learners participate in a qualitative group interview after the intervention with the course.
Results: Empathy and attitudes toward the humanities improved after participation in the class. Understanding of the patient's perspective became more detailed and complex after the intervention. Anxiety of the students increased after the experience. Some feedbacks: ?I realized the value of health, sorry for the ones who don?t have? ?I realized what I had? ?Disability is very difficult? ?I feel lucky, because I am not disabled? ?Worst is the blindness? ?I will be careful about the disabled patients? ?I will work for the disabled ones in social life? ?Disability needs patience? ?The program helped me to develop empathy? ?The patients should understand that we feel empathy, my feelings are not meaningful if they don?t understand?.
Conclusion: A brief course can contribute to greater empathy. We have a responsibility to provide education for empathic understanding as family medicine teachers.
A course to teach empathy to the medical students and health professionals in Samsun-Turkey