We aim to develop and support innovative research and program evaluation on compassion, resilience and self-care.

Current projects include research on "The Pause" and compassion that may arise during medical simulations. The CCI supports research at UVA and it also offers program evaluation services to UVA and other entities. We meet and collaborate with the Center for Appreciative Practice and the Center for Interprofessional Collaborations to discuss and pursue research topics related to resilience and compassion in healthcare.

To learn more about our research or inquire about partnerships, contact us.

Publications & Media

Cunningham, T. & Crosby, H. (2023). A Comprehensive Model to Support a Resilient Workforce. Nurse Leader, 21(3), 370-374. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mnl.2023.02.005

Pfeiffer, K., Cunningham, T., Cranmer, J. N., Harrison, T., Crosby, H., Schroeder, K., Jordan, D. & Coburn, C. (2023). Changes in Posttraumatic Growth After a Virtual Contemplative Intervention During the COVID-19 Pandemic. The Journal of Nursing Administration, 53(1), 40-46. https://doi.org/10.1097/nna.0000000000001240 

LeBaron, V., Boukhechba, M., Edwards, J., Flickinger, T., Ling, D. & Barnes L. (2022). Exploring the Use of Wearable Sensors and Natural Language Processing Technology to Improve Patient-Clinician Communication: Protocol for a Feasibility Study.  Journal of Medical Internet Research, 11(5):e37975. DOI: 10.2196/37975 

Muir, K. J., Webb-Jones, J., Farish, N., Barker, K., Claiborne, M. Galloway, S. (2022). "Room to Reflect": A Pilot Workplace Resiliency Intervention for Nurses. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. https://www.mdpi.com/1660-4601/19/12/7272/htm

Fontaine, D., Cunningham, T., & May, N. (2021). Self-care for new and student nurses.(ed.) Sigma Nursing.

Çayir, E., Cunningham, T., Ackard, R., Haizlip, J., Logan, J., & Yan, G. (2021). The Effects of the Medical Pause on Physiological Stress Markers among Health Care Providers: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial. Western Journal of Nursing Research. https://doi.org/10.1177/01939459211027657

Cunningham, T. and Çayir, E. (2021). Nurse Leaders Employ Contemplative Practices to Promote Healthcare Professional Well-being and Decrease Anxiety. JONA: The Journal of Nursing Administration, 51(3), 156-161. https://doi.org/10.1097/NNA.0000000000000987

Epstein, E. G., Haizlip, J., Liaschenko, J., Zhao, D., Bennett, R., & Marshall, M. F. (2020). Moral Distress, Mattering, and Secondary Traumatic Stress in Provider Burnout: A Call for Moral Community. AACN Advanced Critical Care, 31(2), 146-157. https://doi.org/10.4037/aacnacc2020285

Powell, L. and Hunter, J. (2020). How to Recapture Leadership’s Lost Moment. Leader to Leader, 2020 (98), 51-57. https://doi.org/10.1002/ltl.20519

Çayir, E., Owen, J.A., Brashers, T., Haizlip, J., and Cunningham, T. (May 21, 2020). Measuring compassionate care among interprofessional healthcare teams: Developing and testing the feasibility of a collaborative behaviors observational assessment tool. Clinical Simulation in Nursing. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecns.2020.03.011

DeMauro, A. A., Jennings, P. A., Cunningham, T., Fontaine, D., Park, H., & Sheras, P. L. (2019). Mindfulness and caring in professional practice: An interdisciplinary review of qualitative research. Mindfulness. Advance online publication. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12671-019-01186-8

Fontaine, D. K. (2019, June 23). A healing mantra for all of us: Be kind [Column]. The Daily Progress. Retrieved from https://www.dailyprogress.com/opinion/guest_columnists/opinion-commentary-a-healing-mantra-for-all-of-us-be/article_3897305e-945e-11e9-be9e-0b642823bbc4.html.

Cunningham, T., Ducar, D. M., & Keim-Malpass, J. (2019). “The Pause”: A delphi methodology examining an end-of-life practice. Western J of Nursing Research. Advance online publication. doi.org/10.1177/0193945919826314

Trail, J., & Cunningham, T. (2018). The compassionate university: How University of Virginia is changing the culture of compassion at a large, American public university. Journal of Perspectives in Applied Academic Practice, 6(3), 49-56. https://doi.org/10.14297/jpaap.v6i3.358

Ducar, D.M., & Cunningham, T. (2018). Honoring Life After Death: Mapping the Spread of the Pause. American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine®. https://doi.org/10.1177/1049909118813553

Cunningham, T. (2018) Critical compassion: The Compassionate Care Initiative at the University of Virginia. HealthManagement.org The Journal, 18(5), 362-364.https://iii.hm/nls

Cunningham, T. (2018, Aug. 25). In death's wake, the power of The Pause [Column]. The Richmond Times Dispatch. Retrieved from https://www.richmond.com/opinion/their-opinion/guest-columnists/tim-cunningham-column-in-death-s-wake-the-power-of/article_16f69f9c-f7e7-5904-a29a-cc62154fc625.html?utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_campaign=user-share%20via%20@RTDOpinions.

Harmon, R. B., DeGennaro, R., Norling, M., Kennedy, C., & Fontaine, D. K. (2018). Implementing healthy work environment standards in an academic workplace: An update. Journal of Professional Nursing, 34(1), 20-24. doi:10.1016/j.profnurs.2017.06.001

Fontaine, D.K., Haizlip, J., & Lavandero, R. (2018). No time to be nice in the Intensive Care Unit. American Journal of Critical Care, 27(2), 153-156. doi:10.4037/ajcc2018401

Cunningham, T., Catallozzi, M., & Rosenthal, D. (2018). Camaraderie and community: Buffers against compassion fatigue among expatriate healthcare workers during the Ebola epidemic of 2013-16. Health Emergency and Disaster Nursing, 5(1), 2-11. doi:10.24298/hedn.2016-0014

Cunningham, T. (2017, Dec. 17). Compassion in the Crevices: A Nurse's Story [Column]. The Richmond Times Dispatch. Retrieved from http://www.richmond.com/tim-cunningham-compassion-in-the-crevices-a-nurse-s-story/article_857c65be-8257-5ffd-ba7c-39411b0ef55a.html.

Fontaine, D.K., & Harmon, R. (2017, May 21). Take care, graduates [Column]. The Richmond Times Dispatch. Retrieved from http://www.richmond.com/opinion/their-opinion/guest-columnists/dorrie-fontaine-and-rebecca-harmon-hey-graduates-find-a-job/article_43c5578b-1d93-5a0f-be45-25d56de88e89.html.

Cunningham, T., Rosenthal, D., & Catallozzi, M. (2017). Narrative medicine practices as a potential therapeutic tool used by expatriate Ebola caregivers. Intervention, 15(2), 106-119. doi:10.1097/WTF.0000000000000138

Catallozzi, M., Cunningham, T., & Striplin, M. (2016). The use of narrative practices by expatriate health care providers treating Ebola patients in Western Africa from 2013-2016. The Intima: A Journal of Narrative Medicine, 4(2), 1-4.

Cunningham, T. (2016). Two minutes. The Intima: A Journal of Narrative Medicine, 4(2), 1-4.

Bauer-Wu, S., & Fontaine, D. (2015). Prioritizing clinician wellbeing: The University of Virginia's Compassionate Care Initiative. Global Advances in Health and Medicine, 4(5), 16-22. doi:10.7453/gahmj.2015.042

Howland, L.C., & Bauer-Wu, S. (September 2015). The mindful nurse. American Nurse Today, 12-13; 43.

Fontaine, D. K., Rushton, C.H., & Sharma, M. (2014). Cultivating compassion and empathy. In M. Plews-Ogan & E. Beyt (Eds.), Wisdom leadership in academic health science centers: Leading positive change (pp. 92-110). London: Radcliffe Publishing.

Fontaine, D.K., White, K.R. (2014, Sept. 6). Better care: We all have an interest in empowered nurses [Column]. The Richmond Times Dispatch. Retrieved from http://www.richmond.com/opinion/their-opinion/better-care-we-all-have-an-interest-in-empowered-nurses/article_4baecdf7-4a9d-5a10-8b41-1aebbcb75538.html.

Fontaine, D., & Bauer-Wu, S. (2014, May 11). Conversations about a good death. Richmond Times Dispatch. Retrieved from http://www.timesdispatch.com/opinion/their-opinion/.

Bartels, J. (2014). The Pause. Critical Care Nurse, 34(1), 74-75. doi: 10.4037/ccn2014962

Fontaine, D., Bauer-Wu, S., & Germano, D. (2014, January 23). The architecture of resilience [Column]. The Huffington Post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com.

Fontaine, D. (2013, January 6). Can compassion and empathy be learned? [Editorial]. The Daily Progress, p. B1.

Fontaine, D., Koh, E., & Carroll, T. (2012). Promoting a healthy workplace for nursing faculty and staff. Nursing Clinics of North America, 47(4), 557-566.

Research Affiliates

Individuals at other institutions that we have recently partnered with on research. 


Assistant Professor of Public Health, Yeditepe University School of Medicine (Turkey)

Vice President, Practice & Innovation, Emory Healthcare (United States)