University researchers call on volunteers to share their thoughts on compassionate care

Research news

Wednesday 04 June 2014

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Researchers at Coventry University are looking for members of the public to voice their opinions on the importance of compassion in healthcare provision.

The University is inviting volunteers to participate in group discussions with healthcare professionals and academics at its city centre campus on Monday 9 and Tuesday 10 June.

The information obtained from the discussions will contribute to a new research project on the concept of compassionate care, which is being conducted jointly by the University’s Faculty of Health and Life Sciences and its Psychology Research Centre.

The aim of the project is to determine a method for screening applicants to healthcare courses to ensure that they are equipped with the appropriate personal values and characteristics to care for patients in need.

Rosie Kneafsey, senior lecturer in nursing at Coventry University and one of the project coordinators, said:

This topic has become very important within health and social care services with well publicised failures to provide adequate care leading some to conclude that there is a ‘crisis of compassion’ within the NHS.

Finding ways to put ‘compassion’ back into healthcare has become a high priority but this is something that can mean different things to different people at different times.  That’s why it’s essential that we gather opinions from members of the public as well as those working within the profession.

We’ll be using the information we gather to develop a new questionnaire which will attempt to measure the level of compassion in applicants to health courses.

The discussion groups are being held at Coventry University’s city centre campus from 2pm to 4.30pm on Monday 9 June and from 10am to 2.30pm on Tuesday 10 June. Refreshments will be provided and travel costs reimbursed.

The groups are open to adults of all ages and no experience of research is required. All information gathered will be handled with the strictest confidence and all results will be anonymised.

Anyone interested in taking part in the discussion groups should contact Rosie Kneafsey on +44 (0)24 7679 5909 or via email or Kim Sein on +44 (0)24 7665 9369 or via email

For further information, please contact Mark Farnan, communications officer, Coventry University, on +44 (0)24 7765 8245 or email