The poll of total 3,500 nurses conducted by the Nursing Times revealed that 33 per cent of nurses were feeling increased levels of anxiety and stress. 87 per cent of nurses were experiencing more stressed at work than usual. According to the poll, a third of nurses dealing with the COVID-19 patients shared their mental health has been badly affected.
Director of nursing, policy and practice at the Royal College of Nursing, Susan Masters said that dealing with the novel coronavirus pandemic has a significant adverse effect on the mental health of health care workers and nurses. The medical staff has found themselves in daunting situations whether that’s doing their duties without wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) in unfamiliar conditions or worrying about its impact on their families.
It is as important to tackle these problems and make medical staff feel protected as it to give occupational services or counselling. She said that it is important to make sure that healthcare staff who are facing the same distressing issues as those who are in acute care have access to all these services.
The Nursing Time has recently launched the campaign, “COVID-19: Are you OK?” for monitoring the mental health and wellbeing of nurses who are working on the frontline. The editor, Steve Ford said that dealing with the novel coronavirus pandemic is exacting the heavy emotional and mental toll on the nurses working on the forefront.
He added that they want the employers to ensure the safety of their nursing workforce who is grappling with the crisis as a failure to do so would be dangerous. The poll is recent in the series of alarming coronavirus reports coming from the health sector over the concerns about the lack of PPE and mental health.
The YouGov poll for the Public Policy Research Institute found that nearly half of the healthcare workers across the health sector said that COVID-19 pandemic is having a bad impact on their mental wellbeing. The poll found that anxiety rates and rates of burnout are far more than usual including 50 per cent of 996 health workers surveyed sharing their mental health has been badly affected and deteriorated since the novel coronavirus began affecting the United Kingdom.
Half of them said that they are worried about the safety of their family due to the shortage of personal protective equipment. Less than the third of health workers felt that authorities were doing enough for protecting their mental wellbeing, 43 per cent of them said that too little was being done.
Healthcare Professionals are probably going to experience fear, uneasiness, anxiety and a feeling of frailty. There could even be some aspects, for example, fury and outrage toward the people who have not followed the protocols of social distancing.
There can also be empathy exhaustion. Health workers already had day-to-day hectic and stressful. Including the additional stress from the COVID-19 pandemic, where there are such a significant number of questions, will be troublesome on healthcare experts. There is a great deal of vulnerability about what is going to come at the healthcare professionals and that can compound and channel into their families. There is a range of feelings that are being felt at this phase of the pandemic.
Healthcare professionals can focus on self-care, which may include reading, taking an interest in self-help gatherings, keeping a journal, restricting exposure to social media, conversing with a companion or adored one about what they are encountering, doing physical exercise, taking part in medication and care, and switching off when they return home. These are everything that health workers can do that is easy and simple to do if they are focused on.
If healthcare professionals are slipping into anxiety and depression, they must talk with the therapist or a counsellor.