Change the way you think about caring for others.
Begin a path to deeper awareness and learn:
- How best to use your skills and knowledge.
- How to establish and maintain great relationships with your clients or those you are caregiving.
- How to maintain compassion, both for yourself and those you care for.
Learn about the WisdomWay Institute frameworks for care that is centered in Relationship, that supports trauma-stewardship/Healing Informed Care, and that results in equitable, safe, and compassionate care. The Compass of Mindful Caregiving, and the 6 Qualities of Embodied Mindfulness inform our work.
Learn. Practice. Shift. Sustain.
6 Qualities: Embodied Mindfulness
Health Care Quality
Is health care broken?
What would be possible if our systems were mended?
Where do we begin?
WisdomWay Institute offers solutions.
Our programs are designed to increase safety, respect, equity, & compassion in healthcare.
WisdomWay Institute is joining the discussions with other thought leaders to explore what is out of balance and what is needed in healthcare.
While others focus on systems, we focus on people. On relationships. Connections. Awareness. Our own obstacles to creating the care we really aim for.
We see that the frameworks for creating equity, shared decision-making, safety, and respect in healthcare come down to something that we can do something about.
We can transform healthcare.
We start from the Center.
Relationship Centered Care (RCC), Trauma-Informed Care (TIC) and Anti-Bias Frameworks
We've examined these frameworks and searched for common themes related to the personhood of the practitioner.
We found 6 Qualities of Embodied Mindfulness that healthcare providers must embody in order to provide care that is truly organized around the healing relationship.
Without these qualities we risk causing harm, diminished patient safety, wasted healthcare spending, poorer outcomes and burnout as providers.
These qualities are more than having a 'natural' bedside manner or warmth. We've learned that we not only need to teach these qualities, but that we also need to keep them top of mind throughout the caregiver's career. We can see that we aren't always aware of how we're doing, and while everyone has a bad day, training in and practicing these qualities are essential to delivering safe, equitable and effective healthcare.
"Over time, I have re-conceptualized my role as that of a caring human being first and expert second." —Robin Youngson
It is possible to train in the self-awareness, resilience (Hunter & Warren, 2014) and relationship-centered skills needed to embody these qualities. Mindfulness is an essential component of both cultivating awareness, but managing the cognitive dissonance that comes from letting go of habits, conditioning and bias that make equity and compassion available. (Berila, 2016).
"Empathy and the empathy-based affective skills essential in patient-centered care should be routinely and deliberately taught, modelled, and assessed across the continuum of health care curricula." Ratka A. Empathy and the Development of Affective Skills.
Relationship-Centered Care1 is a framework in response to Patient-Centered Care, and includes a recognition that the personhood of the practitioner influences the relationship.
The 4 tenants of Relationship-Centered Care:
- Each partner is a unique individual with his or her own set of experiences, values, and perspectives.
- Affect and emotion are fundamental to the developing, maintaining, and terminating of relationships.
- Reciprocal influence grounds all clinical relationships as partners develop each other's character.
- It is through genuine and authentic relationships that clinicians are capable of being renewed in their practice2
 Tresolini, 1994, reprinted 2000
 Broadfoot & Candrian, December 2009 Vol. 1 Issue 12
As defined by SAMHSA, the 6 tenants of TIC care include: (SAMHSA, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2014)
- Trustworthiness & transparency
- Peer support
- Collaboration & mutuality
- Empowerment & choice
- Cultural, historical & gender issues
(Elliott, 2005) identifies ten foundations. Among these, providers of care are encouraged to:
- be attuned to one's own affect
- attentive to the specific components of what empowerment means, such as refraining from asking someone to do something
- recognize the power dynamic inherent in the context of health care or helping relationships
- actively tend to creating an environment in which there is implicit and explicit safety.
Dismantling bias/Anti-oppression Pedagogy
There is no single framework but many important voices in defining what healthcare without bias would be as well as how bias itself might be dismantled. Some key contributions are highlighted here.
Report from the Black Women Birthing Justice (BWBJ) Collective
The framework that emerges from the Black Women Birthing Justice (Chinyere Oparah, et al., 2018) report includes 3 frameworks and associated key attributes for positive and helpful health care:
- Emotional support and psychological support: including awareness of and support for stress and trauma
- Key attributes: Reassurance, calm, patience and support, "genuine" empathy, understanding, shared vulnerability
- Respect for the pregnant individual's values, beliefs, and choices
- Key attributes:autonomy, freedom, trust, shared decision-making, reaching consensus, "free from control, coercion or fearmongering"
- Effectiveness and Competency
Karen Laing developed the 6 qualities framework to consolidate these 3 frameworks into core themes that relate to the personhood of the practitioner.
Compassion & "collected attention" are qualities that are essential to be in caring presence.
"Not knowing" is often difficult for those who have been conditioned to have the answers. Yet this curiosity and vulnerability is the key to establishing room for shared decision-making, and the cultivation of respect and trust.
Awareness of power/privilege and a sincere willingness to practice new ways of being with one another is an ongoing practice. Without it, equity in healthcare is not possible.