Introduction: Nurses should have sufficient knowledge and skills for care, and they are also expected to be able to provide compassionate care and fulfill ethical principles. In fact, a decrease in compassion may lead to a decrease in the importance given to ethical values.
Objectives: The study was conducted to determine the level of compassion and ethical sensitivity of nurses and to identify the relationship between compassion level and ethical sensitivity.
Methods: A cross-sectional study carried out with 689 nurses working in a university hospital in Turkey between January-March 2020. The study data were collected using individual information form, the Compassion Scale, and the Ethical Sensitivity Questionnaire. Mann-Whitney U-test, Kruskal-Wallis test, Spearman’s correlation test and multiple linear regression analysis were used to evaluate the data.
Results: It was determined that compassion and ethical sensitivity levels of the nurses were partially high, and that as the compassion levels of nurses increased, the level of ethical sensitivity also increased. Besides, it was determined that the nurses’ levels of kindness, common humanity, and mindfulness, which are sub-dimensions of compassion, are factors that significantly affect the ethical sensitivity and that these factors explain 8% of the total variance at the ethical sensitivity level (R=0.283, R2=0,080, F=9,899, p<0.01).
Conclusions: It was determined that nurses’ compassion and ethical sensitivity levels were partially high, as their level of compassion increased, their ethical sensitivity also increased, and compassion is an important predictor in ethical sensitivity. Practices to increase the compassion level of nurses should be prioritized.