Supporting the Mental Health of Healthcare Workers During COVID-19

Over the last year, the way in which care is delivered has changed and in turn, healthcare workers are faced with potentially high levels of anxiety and depression. These front-line workers, already at risk for high-levels of stress and burnout, are now experiencing even higher levels of stress. Mental Health America recently shared  an article  that discussed a survey distributed to healthcare workers from June-September of 2020. This survey was designed to gain an understanding of the experiences of healthcare workers working during the COVID-19 pandemic and to create better resources moving forward.

Around 93% of the 1,119 healthcare workers surveyed reported feeling stress, with approximately 86% of respondents noting experience of anxiety. The majority of respondents (76%) were worried about exposing loved ones such as children, spouses or even an older family member.  Additionally, emotional and physical exhaustion were common changes reported over the previous three months, with healthcare workers often faced with a lack of emotional support. Despite these results, over half of survey respondents felt they were receiving emotional support from their family and over a third felt supported by their work colleagues.

While emotional and physical exhaustion is taking its toll, anxiety and depression in healthcare workers has also been caused by the uncertainty of how the pandemic will play out. There is a lot of unpredictability regarding the virus as new strains occur, surges continue, and people hesitate or decline vaccination. To help support healthcare workers, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine are responding by putting together a coronavirus resources section that has resources to support healthcare workers. These resources include information and webinars geared towards clinician well-being such as “Supporting Clinician Well-being During COVID-19” and “Taking Action Against Clinician Burnout”.

The Michigan Value Collaborative is committed to supporting collaborative members during the COVID-19 pandemic, and we know hospitals and physician organizations are working diligently to help support their individual staff during this time. To share the ways you are supporting your healthcare workers at your organization, please email us at michiganvaluecollaborative@gmail.com.


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