Compassion in Action

Being Effective in Emotionally Difficult Conversations

Shows how compassion is applied to resolve tough conversations.
Your audience learns how to:

  1. Turn a difficult conversation into a discovery conversation.
  2. Identify three layers of a difficult conversation.
  3. Recognize pivotal moments when conversations can turn around.
  4. Build stronger caregiver-patient partnerships despite the difficulties.

Ideal for interdisciplinary teams. The program features nurses, physicians and allied health professionals at work treating real patients in real life, in entirely candid unscripted scenes. The heightened tension and emotions are real!

  • Set high standards of excellence in patient communication by making it visible.
  • Set the stage for great meetings by using the video to launch a group dialogue on the subject.

Excerpts from “Compassion in Action”

“Nothing is more important than the human connection between the patient and caregiver.  This video shows step-by-step how to give compassion even in difficult situations. Congratulations on a job well done, I think it’s terrific.”

Doug Stone, Harvard Negotiation Project
author: Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most  

“An opportunity to see what a profound difference human caring makes in the lives of others! Real life situations show how to engage with others in a way that cares for their spirit, their emotions, their humanness. I will be using it as a teaching tool for professional and volunteer caregivers.”

Peggy Matteson, PhD, RN, FCN
Commissioned Minister of Health, United Congregational Church
Chair, Department of Nursing, Salve Regina University, Newport, RI

What People Say about Compassion in Action

“I love this video! It’s a wonderful, candid example of compassion at work in a variety of health care settings. It shows the humanity and joy we can find – even in the tougher situations – if we approach them in the right way.”

Abbey Gaske, M.D., Urology Group of Southern California


“There is both an Art and a Science in providing health care to those who suffer. This series illustrates and enlightens providers though its unique training – showing that compassion is the feelings and actions of being present with the sufferer; and suffering with them. This (video) series would enlighten not only physicians and nurses, but has a place as a cornerstone of education and training for the entire multi-disciplinary team including students, management, and Hospital Trustees alike.”

P.J. Woods, PhD, MBA, RN Assistant Professor
University of New Mexico College of Nursing


“Compassion in Action is a beautiful, practical demonstration of how to infuse difficult conversations with love.”
Candace Pert, Ph.D. Neuroscience Research; author of Molecules of Emotion
“Compassion is often forgotten in the skill driven curriculums of nursing schools. This program brings some much-needed attention to the core of nursing. The scenarios were informative and the nurses were very genuine! Thank you for providing quality programs for nurses from every generation.”

Joleen Marrufo, Clinical Educator, Parkview Medical Center, Pueblo, CO


“Incredibly helpful! I was truly amazed and inspired by the nurses and MDs, and their dedication and compassion. This DVD is an excellent teaching resource!”

Jan Anderson, RN, MSN, Director
Santa Barbara City College Associate Degree Nursing Program


“What is so special and valuable about this video is seeing actual spontaneous reactions in real-time. They demonstrate and inspire the art of being present and observant.

Louise Sipos, RN, Patient Representative, Good Samaritan Hospital, Los Angeles



“The sense of revelation that I and my colleagues had while watching this video – what a learning experience! I was moved to tears by one particular scene. I hope all new caregivers see this video, to see the ideal applied to the real. I wish all experienced caregivers could see it to be reminded of why we do what we do – to give LOVE where it is needed most.”

Charlotte Dullea, RN Subacute Unit
Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital



“An insightful look at experts delivering emotionally supportive care to very difficult patients. A clear demonstration of the need for, and value of, compassion in health care.”

Anthony Allina, M.D. Internal Medicine and Family Practice



“We live in an imperfect world, and this video helps us explore the complexities of forming compassionate relationships with our patients. Karen and Simon Fox have truly captured the nature of compassion.”

Elliott Ring RN Ph.D. Director of Organizational Effectiveness
Parkview Medical Center, Pueblo, CO



“This is a compassionate training for all of us who long to know ‘what to say’ or ‘what to do’ when a loved one is suffering. It is an antidote for the sense of alienation and isolation we all feel at life’s toughest times – whether we are the caregiver or the care receiver. Karen Fox’s gentle and insightful teaching is the model of compassion that any caregiver might hope to replicate.”

The Rev. Anne S. Howard
Executive Director, The Beatitudes Society



“The Lakota elders spoke of things being ‘…in a good way.’ The DVD, Compassion in Action, calls the hearts of those of us who serve to keep true to such a path. When good science and compassion marry, we shall see humanity take steps toward the high calling God breathed into us at our birth. Your work has encouraged mine that this may be so. Thank you.”

Fr. Jon-Stephen Hedges, St. Athanasius Orthodox Church
Board Certified Crisis Chaplain & Trauma Responder


“I can think of no better resource for congregations than Compassion in Action. Important information, real people, great wisdom, warm hearts – those in caregiving ministries will be empowered to connect with even the most wounded people with understanding and love.”

Peter S. Buehler, Pastor
First Presbyterian Church of Santa Barbara

How do we teach compassion?

karenSimonAccording to Karen and Simon Fox, the best way to teach compassion is not to teach, but to inspire through real-life examples. Just as Adventures in Caring’s volunteers have learned their skills from personal experiences, the camera follows doctors, nurses and care-givers into the world of real situations, real challenges and real emotions.

The video shows how compassion forms a bridge between the two very different worlds: the world of the busy health care professional and the anxious, uncertain world of the patient. When compassion is present patients feel confident about the care they receive and health care staff experience greater satisfaction when working in a partnership with patients.

Good reasons to cultivate compassion in your staff

  1. missionIncrease patient satisfaction scores
    Patients who experience compassion give hospitals the highest ratings – and then go on to tell all of their friends about the wonderful staff who looked after them.
  2. Increase staff morale and retention
    You will keep your best people longer, and they will hold standards of care higher, when they are invited to bring their hearts to work.
  3. Reduce risk of litigation
    As a rule of thumb, people don’t sue people they like.
  4. Improve patient safety
    Better communication with patients equals fewer mistakes.
  5. Conserve hospital resources
    People who feel cared about under-use resources – they tend to use fewer pain medications and are usually discharged sooner – because their needs are met the first time.
  6. Save staff time
    Spend less time doing damage control for the clumsy communicators who cause misunderstandings and hurt patients’ feelings.
  7. Better medical outcomes
    Research shows that patients who experience empathy are far more likely to stick with their medical regimen, and therefore get better results.

Buy DVD & Leader Guide $295.00

Download to Own: $185.00

View Video: $2.95

This program includes:

  • 45-minute Video.
    Documentary-style production, original musical score and powerful real-life scenes guaranteed to inspire your audience and stimulate a deeply meaningful conversation.
  • 128-page Leader Guide with a detailed five-step training program. Includes skill-building exercises, teaching points for each scene, a self-evaluation method, and expert facilitator tips on how to get the most out of your group dialogue. Plus instructional objectives and video index.
  • 3 Handouts for your audience summarize the essential points of the video, including the three layers of a difficult conversation and diagrams that explain how compassion is applied to build healing partnerships.

“A wonderful follow up to The Medicine of Compassion. It stimulates a discussion on more complex situations where demonstrating compassion can be difficult.”

Craig Luzinski, RN, MSN, CHE, Chief Nursing Officer
Poudre Valley Hospital, Fort Collins, CO

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