Supporting Healthcare Workers during Covid-19

When caring for others, healthcare workers can often neglect their own needs which can result in them experiencing burnout or compassion fatigue.  This neglect over time can exact a heavy toll on the overall wellbeing of a healthcare worker. The Covid-19 pandemic has brought about many uncertainties and challenges for the broader public, but also for our healthcare workers. While ordinary citizens have gone to extraordinary lengths to show their appreciation for those who are “our last line of defense” as stated by Dr Michelle Au and echoed by North West Minister of Health Mr. Madoda Sambatha, many healthcare workers have been struggling with fear and anxiety related to the pandemic.

Following on the first video, which was aimed at the general public and dealt with fear and anxiety related to the Covid-19 pandemic, Dr Petrus together with her colleagues from the Discipline of Psychology and the Centre for Rural health have developed a second video that focuses on the uncertainties that healthcare workers are faced with in the context of the pandemic and how they can manage their feelings related to these uncertainties through the use of problem management skills. Problem management is effective for concrete problems with the understanding that managing those relieves emotional distress.

The video starts by acknowledging that there may be many uncertainties that healthcare workers are faced with and invites them to reflect on their thoughts and feelings and to identify how these may be impacting on their behaviour.  It ends with providing 4 steps which healthcare workers can follow to identify and monitor their emotions.




This video highlights the mental health resources that are available to healthcare workers who are struggling to cope. It is imperative that the health and wellbeing of healthcare workers are not neglected during this pandemic. By recognizing the emotional toll of this pandemic and the need to provide care for themselves, healthcare workers are then able to provide better quality of care to their patients.

If you are a healthcare worker that is struggling please reach out:


Call Healthcare workers Care Network

0800 21 21 21

Article by Dr Ruwayda Petrus


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