Thoughtful Health Care offers a timely antidote to a climate dominated by endless rules, regulations, mission statements, and codes of practice. Fixation on avoiding risk at all costs has created a checkbox culture where everyone is treated according to standardized plans. Yet, people are complicated, and cannot be understood disconnected from the complex histories, values, and environments that shape us. Obsessive focus on “safety first” has obscured this reality and drastically undervalued critical thinking and insightful practice. David Seedhouse explains how simplistic labeling, mindless targets and empty slogans have created a delusion of control and efficiency, obscuring actual patient and carer realities. Using thought-provoking examples from health care and beyond, the book advocates the restoration of thoughtfulness, creativity, and independence in health work. By reading this book, students and practitioners alike will be aided in developing their decision making and critical thinking skills, and ultimately serve those in their care better and with more honesty. The book ends with a powerful and practical toolkit that can be used thoughtfully and effectively by every open-minded health worker. Thoughtful Health Care is for any health worker committed to caring with ethical awareness and practical sensitivity.

The Toolkit

The Toolkit

Thoughtful Health Care

This book has been a journey across just a few of the host of ways where we see incompletely.

It’s totally understandable that when we’re confronted with a problem, we isolate it from other problems. Unless we do this we simply cannot work out how to solve it. Unless we set boundaries to a problem, we become overwhelmed.

But we’ve also seen that isolating problems in life – for example, trying to ‘fix’ a single risk without considering the further risks of doing so – can bring unimaginative, inadequate and often counter-productive results.

Do we have to remain stuck between a rock and hard place, or are there ways we can balance simplifying reality with recognising, and acting on, the vast, overlapping ...

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