"Moral injury, as defined by researchers from veterans hospitals, refers to the emotional, physical and spiritual harm people feel after 'perpetrating, failing to prevent, or bearing witness to acts that transgress deeply held moral beliefs and expectations,'" according to a recent article by Kaiser Health News.
Moral injury in healthcare is not an isolated physician, nurse, medic, or other clinician problem. It is a system problem. The term "moral injury" relates to all of us who are caught in these pervasive situations.
Statements like "the health system is not set up to help patients. It's set up to make money" hurt to the core. Too often we feel we are forced to focus on what we do TO the patient instead of what we do FOR the patient. The forced mentality of do your thing and then move on to the next thing dehumanizes what should be a compassionate encounter.
There is no single solution, but we believe BETTER leveraging technology to provide real time FEEDBACK is part of the solution. In our fragmented and complex system, sometimes you only get a brief moment with your patient. Getting real time feedback regarding the care you helped deliver can help remind you that what you did FOR that individual patient actually mattered.
Helping to provide this critical feedback to individuals even across organizations is one of my major 2020 goals. What are other ways you can help address this "moral injury" problem facing providers right now?