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Communities of practice: acknowledging vulnerability to improve resilience in healthcare teams

Abstract

The majority of healthcare professionals regularly witness fragility, suffering, pain and death in their professional lives. Such experiences may increase the risk of burnout and compassion fatigue, especially if they are without self-awareness and a healthy work environment. Acquiring a deeper understanding of vulnerability inherent to their professional work will be of crucial importance to face these risks. From a relational ethics perspective, the role of the team is critical in the development of professional values which can help to cope with the inherent vulnerability of healthcare professionals. The focus of this paper is the role of Communities of Practice as a source of resilience, since they can create a reflective space for recognising and sharing their experiences of vulnerability that arises as part of their work. This shared knowledge can be a source of strength while simultaneously increasing the confidence and resilience of the healthcare team.

  • professional - professional relationship
  • interests of health personnel/institutions
  • history of health ethics/bioethics
  • ethics
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