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Humanizing Health Care eBook - Nonviolent Communication by Melanie Sears

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  • Its Time to Address the Real Crisis in Health Care

    Now that U.S. policymakers have tackled the first major health carepolicy reform in history, its also time to take a candid look at thedysfunctional culture that has such a dire effect on the quality of patientcare. In this engaging book, Melanie Sears, RN, MBA, leverages morethan twenty-five years of nursing experience to do just that. Fromdomination-style management, fear and judgment-based practitionerrelationships, and a poignant separation between physical, mental,and emotional care, the costs of these factors are enormous. Searsargues that the most effective way to evolve this problematic culture isto shift the language used by those providing care.

    Through real-world stories and practical examples, Searsdemonstrates the profound effectiveness Nonviolent Communicationoffers for creating lasting, positive improvements in patient care andthe workplace environment. If youre a health care administrator,nurse, physician, mental health practitioner, or anyone who caresabout creating a more compassionateand thereby more effectivehealth care system, then you should read this book.

    Learn a practical, effective framework to:

    Reduce health care staff burnout and turnover Create a culture of mentorship and learning Transform nurse-to-nurse and nurse-to-physician hostility Compassionately defuse problem patients Reconnect to your passion for exceptional patient care Effectively address systemic problems as they arise

    Humanizing Health Care teaches honesty without fear,responsibility without blame, and power without exploitation.

    GABOR MAT, MD, author of When the Body Says No: Understanding the Stress-Disease Connection

    A valuable resource for all care providers and consumers who are interested in being partners in the recovery process.

    DONNA RIEMER, RN, PMHN-BC, Certified Traumatologist

    www.NonviolentCommunication.com

    $9.95 USA$10.95 CAN

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    Health care providers should read and use this book. Its message is life-saving.

    CHRISTIANE NORTHRUP, MD, OB/GYN physician, and author, Womens Bodies, Womens Wisdom and The Wisdom of Menopause

  • HumanizingHealth CareCreating Cultures of Compassion With Nonviolent Communication

    Melanie Sears, RN, MBA

    2240 Encinitas Blvd., Ste. D-911, Encinitas, CA 92024email@PuddleDancer.com www.PuddleDancer.com

    For additional information:Center for Nonviolent Communication

    5600-A San Francisco Rd., NE, Albuquerque, NM 87109Ph: 505-244-4041 Fax: 505-247-0414 Email: cnvc@cnvc.org Website: www.cnvc.org

    HHC.1e.1p.int.100806.qxp:booklet 8/6/10 1:19 PM Page i

    2010 PuddleDancer Press www.NonviolentCommunication.com

  • Humanizing Health Care Creating Cultures of Compassion With Nonviolent Communication

    2010 PuddleDancer PressA PuddleDancer Press Book

    All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed,or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying,recording, or other mechanical or electronic methods, without the prior writtenpermission of the publisher, except for use as brief quotations embodied incritical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses as permitted bycopyright law. To request permission, contact the publisher at the followingaddress, Attention: Permissions Coordinator."

    PuddleDancer Press, Permissions Dept.2240 Encinitas Blvd., Ste. D-911, Encinitas, CA 92024Tel: 1-858-759-6963 Fax: 1-858-759-6967www.NonviolentCommunication.com Email@PuddleDancer.com

    Ordering InformationPlease contact Independent Publishers Group, Tel: 312-337-0747; Fax: 312-337-5985; Email: frontdesk@ipgbook.com or visit www.IPGbook.com for other contact information and details about ordering online

    Author: Melanie Sears

    Editor: Sara Saltee

    Cover and Interior Design: Lightbourne, Inc., www.lightbourne.com

    Indexer: Phyllis Linn, Indexpress

    Cover Source Photographs: www.gettyimages.com

    Manufactured in the United States of America

    1st Printing, August 2010

    10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

    978-1-892005-26-7

    HHC.1e.1p.int.100806.qxp:booklet 8/6/10 1:19 PM Page ii

    2010 PuddleDancer Press www.NonviolentCommunication.com

  • What People Are Saying About Humanizing Health Care:

    When health care providers know how to communicate clearlyabout human needs and the emotions that signal them, theentire heath care terrain changes. Hearts open and we canall give and receive the best possible health care. Heres myadvice. Read and use this book. Its message is life-saving.

    CHRISTIANE NORTHRUP, MD, OB/GYN physician, and author of the New York Times bestsellers: Womens Bodies,

    Womens Wisdom and The Wisdom of Menopause

    Humanizing Health Care is beautifully designed and cogentlyaddresses better communication skills in a straightforward,practical manner. The author discusses psychiatric wardsettings for many of her communication examples, but thecommunication techniques she explains can be used anywhereto improve relations and to more empathically connect withothers, be they patients, clients, students, or friends and family.A lovely book.

    PETER R. BREGGIN, MD, author, Medication Madness, Heart of Being Helpful, and Toxic Psychiatry

    Finally, a book that addresses the need to change our deliveryof health careturn the focus from diagnoses, labels, andjudgments into possibilities of health and healing throughcompassion, caring, and connection.

    SYLVIA HASKVITZ, MA, RD, author, Eat by Choice, Not by Habit, and CNVC Certified Trainer

    Humanizing Health Care is a valuable resource for all careproviders and consumers who are interested in being partnersin the recovery process. This book shares practical skillsrequired for use in creating a trauma informed and traumasensitive environment.

    DONNA RIEMER, RN, PMHN-BC, Certified Traumatologist

    HHC.1e.1p.int.100806.qxp:booklet 8/6/10 1:19 PM Page iii

    2010 PuddleDancer Press www.NonviolentCommunication.com

  • In Humanizing Health Care, Melanie Sears provides aninvitation for those who lead and work in health careenvironments to revolutionize the way we provide health care.She provides the tools that will help create the kind ofenvironments that truly provide the safety, the compassion,and the efficiency that our health care systems so desperatelyneed. I dream of working in an environment that has adoptedthese tools.

    JOAN KELLY, LICSW, GMHS, MT-BC

    As a patient in a psychiatric hospital and a recipient of Melsempathy skills which she outlines with such clarity in thisbook, I was able to heal emotionally both from my originalwounding and the trauma of being hospitalized. Having awitness to my intense feelings helped me gradually find trust inmyself again.

    JOANNE LANE, mother, civil engineer, and survivor of mental diagnosis

    Humanizing Health Care is a call from the heart to transformour health care system into a system that cares about peopleshealth and about the health of the people who work in it. AsMelanie articulately and insightfully shows, the two areinseparable. Humanizing Health Care teaches honesty withoutfear, responsibility without blame, and power withoutexploitation.

    GABOR MAT, MD, author of When The Body Says No: Understanding The Stress-Disease Connection

    HHC.1e.1p.int.100806.qxp:booklet 8/6/10 1:19 PM Page iv

    2010 PuddleDancer Press www.NonviolentCommunication.com

  • Contents

    Preface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vii

    Acknowledgments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ix

    Chapter 1 A Crisis in Health Care . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

    Chapter 2 Understanding Nonviolent Communication . . . . . . . 5

    Chapter 3 From Domination to Partnership: The Evolution of Health Care Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

    Chapter 4 The Languages of Diagnosis, Judgment, Analysis, and Labeling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37

    Chapter 5 From Power Over to Power With: The Case of Psychiatric Medicine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59

    Chapter 6 Compassion, Empathy, and Honesty: A Road Map for Creating Life-serving Systems of Care . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77

    Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90

    The Four-Part Nonviolent Communication Process . . . . . . . . . . . . 98Some Basic Feelings and Needs We All Have . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 99About PuddleDancer Press . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100Trade Books From PuddleDancer Press . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 101About the Author . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102

    v

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    2010 PuddleDancer Press www.NonviolentCommunication.com

  • HHC.1e.1p.int.100806.qxp:booklet 8/6/10 1:19 PM Page vi

    2010 PuddleDancer Press www.NonviolentCommunication.com

  • Preface

    Why I wrote this book

    I wrote this book because I have seen such suffering among bothpatients and staff in every health care facility where I have worked.When my own personal journey of healing brought me in touch withNonviolent Communication (NVC), I knew I had found a set of toolswith tremendous potentia