Fatigue in Care: Post COVID-19 Pandemic
By Jasen Chau, PharmD, APh.
Frontline healthcare workers were essential during the COVID-19 pandemic to assist in caring for the weak and to minimize people’s symptoms, with the hope of delaying the spread of the illness. The healthcare system’s significant challenges were evident in the overflow at hospitals, clinics, and urgent care centers as well as the numerous deaths that occurred there. Even paramedics, EMTs, firefighters, and many other people working in mental healthcare are worn out as a result of the pandemic.
Because of the perceived increased responsibility, many people have quit or will leave their profession in due time. Many more people will have experienced significant mental distress and lost the strength to help save lives. These include those who worked behind the scenes, such as psychiatrists and social workers, in addition to frontline personnel. They are also experiencing burnout, including dissatisfaction, tiredness, and the sense that they have nothing more to give.
Compassion fatigue frequently manifests as trouble concentrating, a lack of job satisfaction, pessimism, dread or avoidance, and irritation at work. Though equally debilitating, this is seldom talked about. Longer workdays and an increase in workload could cause imbalances between work and personal life. It might potentially result in an unhealthy work environment. Therefore, the exhaustion and loss of compassion of the healthcare professionals may translate into a loss of excitement and care apathy. The emotional need of helping others is lessened, and empathy is at an all-time low. In the end, this could result in cognitive impairment, poor judgment and conduct, loneliness, sadness, PTSD (posttraumatic stress disorder), and even despair amongst healthcare workers.
Offering webinars and seminars, promoting wellness programs, and creating a happy work atmosphere are some methods to help all healthcare employees. Therapists and nutritionists place a strong emphasis on good habits and hydration. A positive culture with increased employee engagement may result from improved communication, support, and prevention, which will build trust. Assisting the community and society to return to normal will be a difficult task for years to come