Letters - Readers Respond

January-February 2011

The November/December issue of Health Progress is an absolute gem! Thank you!

Ten years ago, I founded an organization: Compassion Fatigue Awareness Project (www.compassionfatigue.org). I receive more than 50,000 "hits" a month on my website and hear from caregivers worldwide who are suffering the effects of the secondary traumatic stress syndrome now known as compassion fatigue. In order to begin the healing process (compassion fatigue can only be recognized and managed; it never goes away), a sufferer must learn to tell his or her story. In this issue, you have touched on so many of the elements necessary for healing — storytelling, education and awareness. Your "Editor's Note" story about your friend being hurt by comments and how she reacted provides an insight into the beginnings of awareness — and that is questioning why we do what we do.

I am taking the issue home with me tonight to read and re-read. Good stuff!

Thanks again.

Patricia Smith
Founder, Compassion Fatigue Awareness Project


The stories (Spreading our Stories) you chose to include within the Nov/Dec Health Progress magazine are fantastic. It was very affirming to read them all. We at Saint Elizabeth felt especially proud to be included among those selected. Thank you again for considering our diversity ambassador concept worthy of sharing.

I have one note to add, if you don't mind. I feel bad about even mentioning this, but it did raise eyebrows among our employees. As editors, of course, you make appropriate changes to articles, but one of those changes is resulting in some hard feelings among people within our small state of Nebraska.

In the article, this sentence appeared with an offending word change:

"Once recognized (if at all) for its high-quality beef and hard-hitting football, Lincoln is often considered the 'middle of nowhere'."

I had used the word "typically" (which someone changed to "once") because, in fact, Omaha Beef (national brand) and Nebraska beef generally are still recognized as among the finest in the U.S. and served in numerous outstanding restaurants across the nation and the world. Also, our football team was ranked No. 5 among college teams a week ago. So saying we were "once" known for these attributes is not wholly inaccurate. We understand that very few people think of Nebraska at all, but we are still here and, if recognized, it is typically for our fine beef and hard-hitting football.

I just wanted to bring this to your attention so your editors will be more careful in the future. Our employees otherwise loved the stories and the entire magazine.

Jo Miller
Saint Elizabeth Public Relations
Lincoln, Neb.


I thought you might find this to be of interest. Tim Size, who heads the Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative, publishes a very good newsletter on rural health issues. He revised and summarized the September/October issue of Health Progress as the lead story in the October newsletter. Tim is a tireless rural advocate and a very astute observer of the rural health care environment. It is high praise that he chose to highlight CHA's coverage of rural issues.

I thought the whole issue came together very well. It has received many positive comments.

John A. Gale, M.S.
Research Associate
Maine Rural Health Research Center
Cutler Institute for Health and Social Policy
Muskie School of Public Service
University of Southern Maine
Portland, Maine


Copyright © 2011 by the Catholic Health Association of the United States
For reprint permission, contact Betty Crosby or call (314) 253-3477.

Letters - Readers Respond

Copyright © 2011 by the Catholic Health Association of the United States

For reprint permission, contact Betty Crosby or call (314) 253-3490.