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The Nature of Conflict in Health-Care

Campbell, C. and Reid, C. (2015) The Nature of Conflict in Health-Care. In: Patole, Sanjay, (ed.) Management and Leadership – A Guide for Clinical Professionals. Springer, New York, pp. 149-165.

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Conflict in health-care, at all levels of the organization is both common and expected. Providing care to patients presents unique challenges in an environmental context that is characterized by physical and emotional adversity, and especially for practitioners, persistent stress. This chapter discusses issues that are central to the nature of conflict encountered in health-care settings from a relational person-centered perspective. Conflict is viewed as non-linear and multi-determined. A conceptual overview of the common sources of conflict, and its impact, in a health care setting are discussed in terms of the patient-practitioner relationship as well as within multi-disciplinary teams. Understanding patient’s responses to communication of illness as well as group dynamics within treating teams is critical to a fulsome understanding of the role conflict plays within these relationships. Principals of authenticity, empathy and unconditional positive regard from a person-centered perspective are presented as a guide for navigating these relationships toward resolution and growth when conflict inevitably arises.

Publication Type: Book Chapter
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Psychology and Exercise Science
Publisher: Springer
Copyright: Springer
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