Original Paper

Clinical Social Work Journal

, Volume 35, Issue 3, pp 155-163

First online:

Measuring Compassion Fatigue

  • Brian E. BrideAffiliated withSchool of Social Work, University of Georgia Email author 
  • , Melissa RadeyAffiliated withCollege of Social Work, Florida State University
  • , Charles R. FigleyAffiliated withCollege of Social Work, Florida State University

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This manuscript provides practitioners a gateway into understanding assessment instruments for compassion fatigue. We first describe and then evaluate the leading assessments of compassion fatigue in terms of their reliability and their validity. Although different instruments have different foci, each described instrument measures at least one component of compassion fatigue. The final section discusses three factors in selecting a compassion fatigue measure: the assessment domain or aspect of compassion fatigue to be measured; simultaneous measurement, and; timeframe of what is being measured. Finally, we caution about interpreting scores since the measures were developed as screening devices.


Compassion fatigue Secondary traumatic stress Vicarious trauma Assessment Measurement