Klatt TE, Sachs JF, Huang C-C, et al. Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf. 2021;47:759-767.
This article describes the implementation of a peer support program for “second victims” in a US healthcare system. Following training, peer supporters assisted at-risk colleagues, raised awareness of second victim syndrome, and recruited others for training. The effectiveness of the training was assessed using the Second Victim Experience Support Tool. The most common event supported was inability to stop the progress of a medical condition, including COVID-19.
Musunur S, Waineo E, Walton E, et al. Acad Psychiatry. 2020;44:586-591.
This article describes the impact of an interactive session with second-year medical students utilizing case-based learning, small group discussion, and video vignettes intended to prepare healthcare providers to anticipate and understand the impact of medical errors. Pre- and post-surveys found that this one-hour, small-group session increased medical students’ understanding of the impact of medical errors and adverse events and the resources available to support providers.
Ripp JA, Peccoralo L, Charney D. Acad Med. 2020;95:1136-1139.
This commentary discusses one health system in New York City and its experiences identifying and supporting the emotional needs of its workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic. In March 2020, the health system established a new Employee, Faculty, and Trainee Crisis Support Task Force which identified three priority areas for promoting and maintaining workforce well-being during the pandemic: (1) meeting basic daily needs, (2) enhancing communications for timely, reliable and reassuring messages, and (3) developing robust psychosocial and mental health support options.
Rosa WE, Schlak AE, Rushton CH. Nurs Manage. 2020;51:28-34.
These authors discuss the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on burnout and moral distress among nurses and outline several recommendations to support nurses, promote resilience, and maintain patient outcomes during and after the pandemic.
Wu AW, Buckle P, Haut ER, et al. J Patient Saf Risk Manag. 2020;25:93-96.
This editorial discusses priority areas for maintaining and promoting the well-being of the healthcare workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic. The authors discuss the importance of providing adequate personal protective equipment (PPE), supporting basic daily needs (e.g., provision of in-hospital food stores), ensuring frequent and visible communication, supporting mental and emotional well-being, addressing ethical concerns, promoting wellness, and showing gratitude for staff.
Jenkins I, Sebasky M, Bell J, et al. Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf. 2020;46:542-545.
This commentary describes one academic medical center’s approach to “medical distancing” to mitigate the risk of virus transmission for patients and healthcare workers, and the effects on both patient care and medical education.
Tannenbaum SI, Traylor AM, Thomas EJ, et al. BMJ Qual Saf. 2021;30:59-63.
This article summarizes evidence-based recommendations for team-based patient care during the COVID-19 pandemic. These recommendations focus on team functioning, safety culture, and resilience. The authors discuss how individual-, team-, and organizational-level stressors, as well as work-life stressors, can affect team performance.
Effective practice in times of crisis is reliant on a workforce that feels safe and supported by their organization. This alert highlights distinct stressors to clinical psychological health during the COVID-19 pandemic and lists actions organizations can take to remove barriers that may hinder clinicians seeking the help they need in times of high stress.
Dzau VJ, Kirch D, Nasca TJ. N Engl J Med. 2020;383:513-515.
This commentary discusses the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on the physical, emotional, and mental health on the healthcare workforce and outlines five high-priority actions at the organizational- and national level to protect the health and wellbeing of the healthcare workforce during and after the pandemic.
Kisely S, Warren N, McMahon L, et al. BMJ. 2020;369:m1642.
This meta-analysis examined the psychological effects of viral outbreaks on clinicians and effective strategies to manage stress and psychological distress. The review included 59 studies involving severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), COVID-19, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), Ebola and influence. Compared with clinicians at lower risk, those in contact with affected patients had greater levels of both acute and post-traumatic stress, as well as psychological distress. Clinicians were at increased risk for psychological distress if they were younger, more junior, had dependent children, or had an infected family member. Identified interventions to mitigate stress and psychological distress included clear communication, infectious disease training and education, enforcement of infection control procedures, adequate supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) and access to psychological support.
The International Society for Quality in Health Care. March - May 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a worldwide crisis that requires organizations, governments, and individuals to draw from the collective experience and rapidly improve practice. This series of webinars discuss a variety of foci to share experience from the field. Topics covered include human factors engineering, clinician support, and communication.
Shanafelt TD, Ripp JA, Trockel M. JAMA. 2020;323:2133-2134.
This article summarizes key considerations to ensure that healthcare professionals are supported and equipped to provide care for patients and communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The authors discuss sources of anxiety amongst healthcare professionals and how healthcare leadership can communicate and connect with their teams to mitigate concerns to the extent they are able.
Wu AW, Connors C, Everly GS. Ann Intern Med. 2020;172:822-823.
To address the negative psychological impacts faced by healthcare workers during the COVID-19 crisis, the authors of this commentary recommend three strategic principles for healthcare institutions responding to the pandemic:
Encourage leadership to focus on resilience
Ensure that crisis communication provides both information and empowerment
Create a continuum of staff support within the organization to address a surge in mental health concerns among healthcare workers.
Lai J, Ma S, Wang Y, et al. JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3:e203976.
Healthcare workers on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic are at risk for adverse psychological impacts. This cross-sectional survey evaluated mental health outcomes affecting healthcare workers treating patients exposed to COVID-19 in China. The 1,257 survey respondents reported symptoms of distress (72%), depression (50%), anxiety (45%) and insomnia (34%). Those engaged directly in the diagnosis, treatment and care of patients with COVID-19 were at greater risk for symptoms of depression (odds ratio [OR]=1.52; 95% CI, 1.11-2.09), anxiety (OR=1.57; 95% CI, 1.22-2.02), insomnia (OR=2.97; 95% CI, 1.92-4.60), and distress (OR=1.60; 95% CI, 1.25-2.04). The authors conclude that special interventions to promote the mental well-being of healthcare workers treating patients with COVID-19 need to be immediately implemented in order to reduce psychological burden.
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