Measuring empathy during psychotherapy

Why listening to patients is a prerequisite for empathy and may be crucial for healing.

Research indicates that psychotherapy is most helpful when patients think their therapists empathize with them. Patients are more likely to be satisfied with their treatment and more likely to accept their therapists' suggestions. At the same time, a lack of perceived empathy is one of the best predictors of a negative outcome in psychotherapy and increases the likelihood of malpractice litigation.

To continue reading this article, you must login.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »