Simon and Karen Fox and the Alchemy of Compassion

Local couple teach medical students how to apply compassion to promote healing

Simon and Karen Fox were selected to deliver this year’s Tourner Lecture on Compassionate Care to the medical and nursing students of Indiana University and the staff of Bloomington Hospital.

“Gifted healers always communicate something more than information to their patients”, said Karen Fox. “They convey compassion. But how they do so remains a mystery to most.” In their lecture, The Alchemy of Compassion, the Foxes presented the practical art of communicating with patients – in ways that build trust, inspire hope, and evoke the will to heal.

Simon and Karen Fox, with Sung Park, nurse practitioner, employee award winner for exemplary compassionate care, and Richard Schilling MD, sponsor of the lecture and award.
Click to enlarge photo

Simon and Karen Fox, with Sung Park, nurse practitioner, employee award winner for exemplary compassionate care, and Richard Schilling MD, sponsor of the lecture and award.

For 26 years the Foxes have taught this art in Santa Barbara through the Adventures in Caring Foundation. On October 22, hosted by the Bloomington Hospital Foundation in Indiana, they shared their story and their method with an enthusiastic audience of physicians, nurses, hospital administrators, and students. “A great presentation”, said Todd Rowland MD, Executive Director at HealthLINC of Bloomington, “and the development of a process that can be replicated. That is rare in this world.”

“Compassion is the foundation of all healing relationships”, said Simon Fox. “Even though most conversations about health care revolve around the cost of it, or the latest breakthrough in medical science, at the heart of quality health care is a good relationship with a patient.”

Simon and Karen Fox are the Executive Director and Founder of the nonprofit Adventures in Caring Foundation. Best known for its all-volunteer Raggedy Ann & Andy visiting program for hospitals and skilled nursing facilities, the mission of Adventures in Caring is to lift the spirits of those who are sick and lonely, and to cultivate compassion in health care. This year the organization celebrates 26 years of teaching and delivering compassion.

Adventures in Caring, 1528 Chapala St., Suite 202, Santa Barbara, CA 93101, (805) 962-4500

To submit a comment on this article, email or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email

Be succinct, constructive, and relevant to the story. Leaving a comment means you agree to our Discussion Guidelines. We like civilized discourse. We don't like spam, lying, profanity, harassment or personal attacks.

comments powered by Disqus
event calendar sponsored by:

Montecito Pushes Back on Streamlined Rebuild Process

Not so fast with fast-track rebuilding, leaders tell the county

St. George Files Suit Against Gelb for Unpaid Debt

Pair of Isla Vista landlords in legal tussle over property sales costs.

Thousands of Plaintiffs Added to Refugio Oil Spill Case

Litigation follows footsteps of 1969 Union Oil spill attorneys.

Push Comes to Shove Between Law Enforcement and Mental Health

County supervisors confront too many needs with not enough money.

Helicopter Hits Electrical Wires, Starts Small Fire

A crop duster hit power lines in Ellwood Canyon.