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Re-humanising Healthcare- Dr Robin Youngson on Compassionate, Integrated, Healing Healthcare

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Dr Robin Youngson is an inspiring visionary and catalyst for truly compassionate, holistic, mindful and healing healthcare. Through opening himself and his own personal journey to others, he touches the heart of patients, healthcare professionals and hospital managers. As founder of Hearts in Healthcare and author of “TIME TO CARE – How to love your patients and your job” he is a powerful advocate for the transformation of healthcare.

In this interview, he draws on his frustrating experience of trying to get proper care for his daughter who had been seriously injured and admitted to hospital for 100 days. Within a few hours he went from being a senior doctor, a powerful person in the hospital system, to a disempowered advocate for good care. He describes his own journey from doctor as technician to doctor as a mindful, healer and compassionate human being.

Robin shares some of the evidence for holistic, compassionate healthcare and gives examples of where this is already happening. He discusses how he benefitted from taking a mindful approach to his own thoughts, feelings and behaviours and how that radically transformed the healthcare experience for his patients, colleagues and himself. He talks about burnout and cynicism in medical staff. He shares his challenges in trying to reform the healthcare system. He has realized after 15 years of trying that there is no point in trying to persuade people or systems to practice compassionate healthcare. Instead, he has founded a global network of early adopters, passionate advocates and practitioners of caring, healing, holistic healthcare called Hearts in Healthcare. The network enables the sharing of powerful inspiring stories, of good evidence, of techniques that work and experience in transformational change.


Read “Time to Care- How to love your patients and your job”

Visit Hearts in Healthcare 


Robin Youngson biography

Dr Robin Youngson is a former engineer, a practising clinician, a systems thinker, system “healer” and the Clinical Leader of Waitakere Hospital in Auckland. Robin was the founder of CLANZ, the Clinical Leaders’ Association of New Zealand.

Robin graduated with an honours degree in engineering at Cambridge University. He worked for three years in oil exploration, saving funds to pay his way through medical school in Bristol. He took an honours degree in Medicine and then became a Fellow of both the Royal College of Anaesthetist of England and the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists. He was the pioneering doctor on the Childflight, paediatric Air Ambulance Service in NZ. He started his first consultant job at Auckland Hospital as an anaesthetic specialist in 1994.

Robin was closely involved in patient process redesign and quality improvement. The turbulent healthcare reforms of the 1990’s led him to issues of leadership, particularly in response to the introduction of alien corporate and market ideology. The Clinical Leaders Association was an attempt to get core professional values back into public healthcare.

In the last five years, Robin has worked with a visionary team of managers and professionals at Waitemata DHB in the development of the new Waitakere Hospital. He is also co-facilitator of the Waitakere Trauma Reference Network, a cross-sector and community response to injury prevention involving local government and multiple community and public service organisations.

Robin is Acting Chair of the National Health Epidemiology and Quality Assurance Advisory Committee (EpiQual) and an inaugural member of the International Steering Committee for the new World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre on Patient Safety.

Robin has presented and taught widely on issues of clinical service redesign, patient-centred reform, clinical leadership, patient safety, open disclosure, and compassion in healthcare. He is an inspiring keynote speaker.

Read more at The Future of Western Civilization


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