Level of Empathy among Medical Students in Kuwait University, Kuwait
ABSTRACT Objectives: To evaluate the level of empathy among medical students in Kuwait University Medical School and its association with sociodemographic factors, stress levels and personality. Subjects and Methods: A cross-sectional survey of 264 medical students was conducted in the Faculty of Medicine, Kuwait University. Empathy levels were measured using the Jefferson Scale, personality was assessed using the Zuckerman-Kuhlman Personality Scale and the Perceived Stress Scale was used to measure stress levels. Factors associated with empathy were evaluated using t test/ANOVA for categorical variables and correlation for continuous predictors. Results: Mean empathy score was 104.6 ± 16.3. Empathy scores were significantly associated with gender, year of study, mother's level of education, household income, satisfactory relationship with the mother and stress levels. Male medical students in their clinical years also had significantly lower empathy levels. However, factors such as grade point average, desired specialty, marital status of parents, father's educational level and relationship with father were not significantly (p > 0.05) associated with levels of empathy. Stress scores were significantly and positively associated with empathy (r = 0.13; p = 0.041). Conclusion: Medical students in Kuwait University had low empathy level and this may be a cause for concern; as such we suggest a possible inclusion of emphasis on empathy in the curriculum.
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ABSTRACT: Empathy is considered to be associated with better patient compliance, satisfaction, and clinical outcomes. The aim of the study is to measure and examine empathy among a sample of undergraduate medical students of Bangladesh. It was a cross-sectional study and all the medical students of first through fifth year enrolled at Chattagram Maa-O-Shishu Hospital Medical College during the study period of 2014 were surveyed. Participants anonymously completed the Jefferson Scale of Empathy Medical Student version translated into Bengali language, a valid and reliable 20-item self-administered questionnaire. Principal component factor analysis with varimax rotation and Cronbach's alpha coefficient were calculated to check validity and reliability of the scale. ANOVA was used to examine the differences in empathy between gender, academic years, and specialty preferences. The mean empathy score was 110.41 ± 13.59. Cronbach's alpha coefficient was 0.88. There were significant associations between gender and empathy scores. The level of empathy in medical students gradually increases after clinical training in medical college. A nonsignificant difference was found between empathy scores and specialty preferences. It is suggested that the medical curriculum in Bangladesh should include more extensive program to promote empathy and other humanistic values among the medical students.01/2014; 2014:375439. DOI:10.1155/2014/375439
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ABSTRACT: Objective: Empathy is the most frequently mentioned humanistic dimension of patient care and is considered to be an important quality in physicians. The importance of fostering the development of empathy in undergraduate students is continuously emphasised in international recommendations for medical education. Our aim was to validate and adapt the Slovenian version of the Jefferson Scale of Empathy-Students version (JSE-S) on a sample of first-year medical students. Methods: First-year students of the Medical faculty in Ljubljana participated in the research. JSE-S version, a self-administered 20-item questionnaire, was used for collecting the data. Descriptive statistics at the item level and at the scale level, factor analysis, internal consistency and test-retest reliability (two weeks after the first administration) of the JSE-S were performed. Results: 234 out of 298 (response rate 78.5%) students completed JSE-S. The mean score for the items on the 7-point Likert scale ranged from 3.27 (SD 1.72) to 6.50 (SD 0.82). The mean score for the scale (possible range from 20 to 140) was 107.6 (from 71 to 131, SD 12.6). Using factor analysis, we identified six factors, describing 57.2% of total variability. The Cronbach alpha as a measure of internal consistency was 0.79. The instrument has good temporal stability (test-retest reliability ICC = 0.703). Conclusion: Findings support the construct validity and reliability of JSE-S for measuring empathy03/2014; 53(1). DOI:10.2478/sjph-2014-0010
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ABSTRACT: Abstract Introduction: The suggestion that empathy "declines" or "erodes" as students progress through medical school has largely rested on observations reported from Jefferson Medical College in the United States using the Jefferson Scale of Physician Empathy (JSPE) developed by Hojat and colleagues. Now that the student version of JSPE has been administered to medical students in more than a dozen countries, it is timely to consider whether or not the Jefferson "case study" and the conclusions drawn from it are generalisable. Methods: A literature research was conducted on MEDLINE in mid-2014 to identify studies reporting administrations of the Student version of JPSE (JSPE-S) to cohorts of medical students and the means for studies and their sub-parts conducted in Japan, South Korea, China, Kuwait, India, Iran, UK, USA, Australia, Brazil, Colombia, the Dominican Republic and Portugal. Results: The means of these studies from a dozen countries outside the USA consistently cluster round 75% out of the possible maximum of 140 unlike the early Jefferson studies (although the later Jefferson means are also <120). Conclusions: These observations may support Costa et al.'s contention that "a latent growth model suggests that empathy of medical students does not decline over time" (p. 509) - or at least not significantly. But in order to understand the maturation process of medical students and trainees we need to develop more sophisticated, integrated models that combine culturally-sensitive concepts of emotional intelligence and moral reasoning with far more refined understandings of the nature of empathy required for the safe practice of patient-centred medicine.Medical Teacher 02/2015; DOI:10.3109/0142159X.2015.1009022 · 2.05 Impact Factor