Doctors and Nurses never shy away from helping those in need, even when it puts their own health at risk. But during this time of the coronavirus pandemic, their own mental health could be suffering. That’s this week’s Intentional Living.
Being a health care provider is always high risk and full of stress, but experts are saying because of the coronavirus, those risk factors and stressors are amplified. Our health care workers are becoming the so-called “second victims” of this crisis. That term refers to those experiencing trauma related to a patient’s care.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta with CNN says, “you’re talking about a vulnerable population of people. I mean, death by suicide among the medical community and within EMT’s and emergency workers, it’s the highest among medical workers. You know, there’s a lot of stress.”
Hospitals around the country have been running at or over capacity. Work hours have increased, supplies and protective gear have been in short supply or at times non-existent, and yet health care workers are expected to give each and every patient 110-percent. And because of how contagious the disease is, patients often aren’t allowed to have contact with their loved ones, putting their doctors and nurses in the position of comforter as well. Many in the health care industry have also decided to distance themselves from family members to keep them safe.
Dr. Gupta states, “significant psychological toll of that as well. Not just for themselves in terms of am I safe, did I contract the virus, was I just exposed. Then going home. Potentially exposing it to others.
Which is why, now more than ever, they need our support.