Colleagues are the heart of our organisation. They have ensured we were not overwhelmed in the initial peak. This was often at great personal cost and they continue to provide excellent and compassionate care to patients and their families. It is our responsibility to care for them and to ensure they are more than OK.
The pandemic highlighted the often-distressing nature of caring for patients with Covid-19, particularly when patients numbers are high and resources are stretched. We also recognise the potential negative impact on the mental health and wellbeing of nurses and other colleagues and are committed to providing support to those who are affected.
In supporting the campaign, we pledge to:
- Provide easily accessible formal mental health and wellbeing support to colleagues for as long as it is needed
- Foster a culture of mutual support, in which colleagues are alert to the possibility that colleagues may be experiencing problems as a result of their work during the pandemic, and ready to offer informal support such as listening and signposting to internal or external sources of formal support
- Ensure that colleagues who are experiencing problems know that they will receive a positive, supportive response if they disclose problems, and understand that being asked ‘Are you OK?’ is a gesture of support and care, not an accusation of weakness.
We’ve already taken steps to protect colleagues’ mental health and wellbeing, including:
- Health and wellbeing risk assessments for all colleagues, as often as necessary
- Care First 24/7 listening, counselling and advice service
- Coaching support for doctors/consultants
- Support for trauma, PTSD, chronic and complex issues
- Bereavement support services for personal and professional grief and loss
- Friendly ear/wellbeing clinics
- Dedicated intranet page for health and wellbeing resources
- Halsa Wellbeing sessions
- Virtual Schwartz Rounds
- Wellbeing ambassadors
Director of Nursing, Ellen Armistead, said “Colleagues have been amazing throughout the pandemic. Their resilience at these uncertain times and the challenges we have all faced has been made possible with our workforce pulling together.
“I am truly proud of the One Culture of Care that colleagues have wrapped around each other and the pastoral support that has been put in place.”
Read more about the campaign here https://www.nursingtimes.net/news/covid-19-are-you-ok/