{ The Movement for Human-centred Healthcare }


Hearts In Healthcare

Stepping up: Time for new leaders in compassionate healthcare

It’s your turn to become a leader in compassionate healthcare. At Hearts in Healthcare we receive frequent requests to make presentations and to run workshops in healthcare workplaces. However,  have

Hearts In Healthcare | Inspiration

Compassion Activist – Robin Youngson – retires from role

Dr Robin Youngson, the cofounder of Hearts in Healthcare, is retiring from his fifteen-year role as an activist, speaker and leader. I have decided to retire from active involvement in

Hearts In Healthcare

A (draft) Healers’ Creed

Who or what is a healer? Our correspondence shows there is a wide range of beliefs. From our own insight and learnings, and the views expressed by our followers, here’s

Hearts In Healthcare

Compassion Hero: Dr Johanne Egan

All too often, Emergency Rooms resemble a battleground, more than a place of healing. Learn how this inspiring New Zealand doctor transformed her ER into a place of joy, compassion

Hearts In Healthcare | Inspiration

A treasure trove of Hearts in Healthcare articles

From time to time, we write something that really strikes a chord. Here are the all-time, top-ten, most shared articles and resources from Hearts in Healthcare. It’s a treasure trove

Hearts In Healthcare

A new edition of ‘TIME TO CARE’ as a free gift for the world

Robin Youngson is planning a new, expanded edition of ‘TIME TO CARE’. We’re going to make this new edition a FREE GIFT to the world as a pdf e-book. To

Hearts In Healthcare | Inspiration | Research

The great slide give-away!

At Hearts in Healthcare we want to recruit a thousand speakers and presenters spreading the word about compassionate healthcare, all around the world. To help you in that task, co-founder

A personal message to our members from Robin Youngson, CoFounder of Hearts in Healthcare.

In the last year Hearts in Healthcare has reached some major milestones:

  • Our social networks are expanding rapidly. Our Facebook and Twitter posts now reach five to ten times the audience, compared to the beginning of the year. We have nearly 100,000 views on YouTube.
  • Groups in Saudi Arabia, the USA and Australia have been using our ‘Reawakening Purpose’ workshop. Numerous health services and academic institutions around the world are using material from ‘TIME TO CARE’ and our YouTube videos.
  • A growing number of public hospitals in New Zealand are asking us to visit and to work with their staff
  • My book, ‘TIME TO CARE’ is published in Dutch, and the German edition will be launched in 2016. In India, sponsors are sending a free copy of ‘TIME TO CARE’ to 2,200 doctors.
  • The medical professions are embracing compassion. We’re speaking to groups in GP training, medical education, integrative medicine, obstetrics & gynaecology, anaesthetics, psychiatry and paediatrics. My own College of Anaesthetists (ANZCA) issued a media release following my recent conference presentation.
  • We’ve helped catalyzed a wide range of compassion projects across an entire city in the USA – Louisville, Kentucky. For instance the University of Louisville, School of Medicine, recently signed the international Charter for Compassion and is developing compassion programs for both undergraduates and faculty.
  • We facilitated and presented at a three-day conference on “Healing Presence” for 150 senior health executives.
  • The New Zealand Ministry of Health asked me to give the keynote opening address at a national quality improvement workshop.
  • The Institute of Healthcare Improvement (IHI) has invited me to present at the international Quality Improvement Forum in the Middle East.

While the nursing and allied health professions have long supported Hearts in Healthcare, what’s significant in the last year is that mainstream medical professions, health executives, quality improvement groups and government departments are now wanting to hear our message.

It’s easy to forget how far we have traveled. When I did a Google search for ‘compassion+healthcare’ in 2006, the result was only 3,000 page hits. I couldn’t find the word ‘compassion’ in any document regarding healthcare quality or strategy in NZ, Australia, the UK or the USA. Today the same Google search yields 20,000,000 hits. Top of the first page is ‘Hearts in Healthcare’. The world really is changing.

In the last year, we’ve done over 100 presentations, workshops, meetings and events in six countries. It’s easy to get lost in all the rush of activity and I have the added challenge of maintaining a part-time anesthetic practice and continuing medical education. So we feel the time is right to step back, reflect on our learning, and reassess priorities. For a summary of our most profound lessons, see my recent article, ‘Seven pitfalls for the compassion champion’.

As we travel around the world, we are witnessing widespread stress, ill-health and burnout among all the health professions – including health managers. So one of our priorities for the New Year will be creating programs to help professionals tend to their own health and wellbeing.

Compassion begins at home. My first priority is to exercise self-compassion and attend to my own wellbeing. I’m taking a three-month sabbatical to refresh, relax, meditate, reflect and ponder the future of Hearts in Healthcare from a place of stillness. I’ll be disconnecting from email and the news media.

I will reflect with gratitude on the amazing support, encouragement and wisdom we receive from our members, who always inspire us to continue our efforts. You are the standard-bearers for our movement, taking the message far and wide. Know that the world is ready. Take care of yourselves.

See you in the New Year. I’ll take up the reins again in March.

Hearts In Healthcare

Hearts in Healthcare takes off!

A personal message to our members from Robin Youngson, CoFounder of Hearts in Healthcare. In the last year Hearts in Healthcare has reached some major milestones: Our social networks are

Hearts In Healthcare

Prisons are not the only institutions that rob us of liberty and dignity

Grateful thanks to David Wolfe who posted the original image on Facebook, comparing schools to prisons. The addition of hospitals is our own.

Hearts In Healthcare

Hearts in Healthcare goes ‘mobile’

With the relaunch of the Hearts in Healthcare online community, we’re taking our network mobile with two new ‘apps’. 60% of web viewing is now done on mobile devices and, as screen

Hearts In Healthcare | Practice

Free new App aids patient-centered consultations

A colleague from ‘Compassion for Care’ in the Netherlands is offering a free app to Hearts in Healthcare members. The MedIntw App is a practical aid for the medical student/intern, specialist-in-training or physician who

Hearts In Healthcare | Opinion

Compassion cannot flourish when healthcare is a commodity

Opinion by Robin Youngson Why is technology the dominant force in healthcare and not human caring? Why is it so difficult to create a humane and compassionate workplace? Why do we

Here’s a good news story to help end your year on a positive note 🙂

Did you know that a mayor of an American city just won a landslide election victory on a policy platform of human kindness? Tom Tait is the re-elected Mayor of the City of Anaheim in California and we caught up with him during the ‘Compassion Week’ in San Francisco. He shared the stage with three other mayors at the Empathy and Compassion in Society conference.

In Australia, what was the public reaction to the hostage drama in Sydney, when an Islamic gunman held hostage and killed innocent victims? Rather than a tidal-wave of Islamophobia, citizens united to offer support to Muslim Australians, as reported by ABC News in Sydney. The news channel had calls from Muslim listeners who say they are too scared to ride on public transport at the moment. Within hours a new tag on Twitter #illridewithyou had over 120,000 Tweets worldwide.

On a similar note, an inspiring story in the NY Times relates how in Denmark they are attempting to rehabilitate Jihadists returning from fighting in Syria, rather than criminalise them.

The international Charter for Compassion is a rapidly growing movement. In 2013, there were 98 Compassionate Communities and 127 Charter Partners – organisations that have pledge to support the Charter for Compassion. At the end of 2014, there are now over 250 Compassionate Communities and more than 1,000 Partners. For more great news about how the Charter for Compassion is influencing the world, see their newsletter, “We’re spreading the word“. 

Google search for ‘compassion + healthcare‘ in 2006 yielded only 3,000 ‘hits’ and most of those were irrelevant. In the whole world, we couldn’t find any document about healthcare strategy or quality improvement that included the word ‘compassion’. Now the same search yields 23 million ‘hits’ – an extraordinary  change. Try it yourself and marvel at the results!

At Hearts in Healthcare we have noticed a major change in the last year. Suddenly we are getting multiple invitations to present at speciality medical conferences, we are finding support from quality improvement bodies like the Clinical Excellence Commission in Sydney (video here), and we’re appreciating approaches from government health leaders in Australia and New Zealand. The tide has turned.

An editorial in the Postgraduate Medical Journal recently profiled the work of Dr Robin Youngson, Co-Founder of Hearts in Healthcare, and concluded: The question is not ‘How can we afford compassionate care’ but ‘How can we afford NOT to rehumanize our healthcare system?’ A good question, indeed!

TIME TO CARE, the book that launched the movement is now published in Dutch and the German translation will be completed in January. The next stop on our international networking is in Saudi Arabia. Our international movement is gathering pace.

Hearts In Healthcare

The tide of compassion is rising!

Here’s a good news story to help end your year on a positive note 🙂 Did you know that a mayor of an American city just won a landslide election victory

Hearts In Healthcare

International honour for Co-Founder of Hearts in Healthcare

Dr Robin Youngson, the Co-Founder of Hearts in Healthcare, has been appointed to the Global Compassion Council of the international Charter for Compassion founded by Karen Armstrong. He joins 40

Hearts In Healthcare

“TIME TO CARE” published in Dutch

On 28th November, the first foreign-language edition of ‘TIME TO CARE‘ was launched at a major conference in Rotterdam. Author, and CoFounder of Hearts in Healthcare, Robin Youngson was there to

“When all members of an organization are motivated to understand and value the most favourable features of its culture, it can make rapid improvements.”