AALAS Webinar: Strategies for Developing an Institutional Program to Manage Compassion Fatigue

WEB-035: Compassion fatigue is the "cost of caring" for other lives in emotional, mental and physical pain. Compassion fatigue is characterized by deep physical and emotional exhaustion and a pronounced change in the ability to feel empathy. It is marked by increased cynicism at work, a loss of enjoyment of our career, and eventually can transform into depression, secondary traumatic stress and stress related illnesses. The most insidious aspect of compassion fatigue is that it attacks the very core of what brought one into their chosen profession: empathy, care and compassion for all creatures and beings. This webinar will introduce the topic of compassion fatigue as it applies to people who work directly with research animals (animal caregivers, veterinarians and veterinary technicians, and research faculty and staff) and indirectly (members of the IACUC and administrative support staff, animal purchasing and facilities services). The speaker will reflect through 1.5-2 years of data collection in relation to both the causes and impacts of compassion fatigue at the University of Washington. Participants will be provided with tools and strategies to identify, ameliorate, reduce and avoid compassion fatigue as well as strategies for developing and implementing a sustainable institutional program to manage compassion fatigue. While compassion fatigue is a normal consequence of caring, we can learn ways to improve the support system within the laboratory animal workplace and become more resilient and avoid becoming overwhelmed, shutdown and/or leave the work/profession altogether. Such support will help to maintain a healthy and productive climate in lab animal science for both humans and animals. The learning objectives are: Introduce the topic of compassion fatigue as it applies to both people who work directly with animals and members of the IACUC and their support staff; Provide individual strategies on how to manage human emotions for laboratory animal professionals; and Share ideas for developing a sustainable compassion fatigue program that meets your institutional needs.
Thursday, February 22, 2018 - 12:00pm
Event Time Zone: 
Arizona Time (no Daylight savings)
Standard Time