Study: Abortion Nurses Plagued with Compassion Fatigue

A new study conducted at Japan’s Kanazawa University has found that nurses and midwives who participate in abortions are plagued by burnout and compassion fatigue.

LifeSiteNews is reporting that 255 obstetric and gynecological nurses and midwives were involved in the study which was conducted in Japan where abortion is legal up to 21 weeks.

The study lists the symptoms for compassion fatigue as including “chronic fatigue, irritability, dread of going to work, aggravation of physical ailments, and a lack of joy in life.”

The top stress factors for nurses employed in this field were “Thinking that the aborted fetus deserved to live,” “Providing abortion care despite disagreeing with the reason for abortion,” and, “Inability to accept abortion care as a job.”

The study found that the more abortions a nurse or midwife participated in, the more likely she was to suffer from compassion fatigue; however, the more childbirths they attended, the happier they were.

“These findings indicate that providing abortion services is a highly distressing experience for nurses and midwives,” said the study authors.

Even though previous surveys have shown that nurses in Japan generally support abortion, “when actual abortion care was involved, nurses experienced more of a conflict.”

The study recommended that steps be taken “to ensure good working conditions for staff” to reduce burnout and compassion fatigue and by “decreasing the professional confusion and distress related to abortion care in nursing and midwifery. . . ”

The study’s findings are hardly a surprise. As LifeSite points out, very few doctors in the U.S. are even willing to perform the procedure. According to the Guttmacher Institute, founded by a past president of Planned Parenthood, the number of U.S. abortion providers in 1982 was at 2,908. By 2008, the most recent year for which data is available, that number had dropped just 1,793.

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