The CARE Approach: a learning tool for healthcare professionals

The CARE Approach: a learning tool for healthcare professionals


The CARE Approach is an overarching framework for empathic, person-centred encounters in healthcare interactions. It is derived from the CARE Measure, which is a widely used patient-rated measure of the clinical encounter. Whereas the CARE Measure is used to measure patients' experiences of the interpersonal aspects of clinical encounters, the CARE Approach has been specifically developed to help practitioners reflect on, practice, maintain and improve their communication skills and to use these skills effectively in helping empower and enable the patient.

This learning resource has been developed for use by a wide range of healthcare practitioners across the NHS in Scotland. It can be used by individuals, groups or organisations, and is available free of charge within the NHS.

The CARE Approach web-based learning tool consists of six modules, with each one building on the module before. Throughout the modules, suggested exercises, audio recordings and video clips of patient-practitioner encounters are included to illustrate certain points, to facilitate learning and reflection, and to help you respond in relation to your own working environment. A worksheet is provided as a Word document to record your answers.

Links to resources

If you have any difficulty accessing the CARE Approach Manual, or playing the video clips, you may need to install a more recent version of Adobe Reader, which is available from


To provide feedback on the CARE Approach Manual, please contact Professor Stewart Mercer at