Consequence on the mental health of health sector workers exposed to the crisis generated by COVID19
The arrival of vaccines has provided relief in spite of all the controversy that has displaced countless heroes and heroines of this pandemic. Many lives are found, in all parts of the world, being sustained by health professionals who risk their lives and sacrifice their health to save yours, or someone you know, or someone you love...
After a year of radical and complex changes, crises from which many countries are still trying to recover, and a collapse in several sectors worldwide, the psychological impact that COVID-19 has enacted on workers in the health/care sector is being taken for granted and even minimized by some. Vaccine distribution is instilling a sense of hope for many, however, it is imperative that we stay diligent in combating the virus and supporting our health care workers. They have worked too hard and sacrificed too much to have all of their efforts undone. We need to do something about it.
Recent surveys confirm that Health-Care Workers are 2–3 times more likely to have high PTSS levels than those not exposed. The levels of psychological stress, depression, anxiety, and insomnia presented by our first-line fighters treating patients with COVID-19 could be driving these groups to have to deal with a long-term mental health challenge such as PTSD. Frontline Health-Care Worker’s mental health disorders that are occurring as a consequence of the crisis, are being considered a parallel problem within the chaos, but it does not have the exposure to be dealt with properly. Many Healthcare professionals have made the selfless decision to avoid opportunities to be with their families out fear of exposing them to the contagion of the virus. All in order to be the key players in trying to save as many lives as possible for which they should also be allowed to breathe, be calm, express, and heal.
Our road map to building a healthier and stronger society depends on the empathy that we are able to show those who go out every day to try to alleviate the humanitarian crisis that the pandemic has imposed for over a year. We must continue to, thank, value, and support their commitment to our communities, and of course facilitate spaces for catharsis, rest, and calm to prevent the symptoms of post-traumatic stress that they could be developing due to the constant exposure they have to risky situations.
We will continue to support this union of maintaining social isolation, maintaining regular hygiene measures, giving healthcare workers the exposure with the recognition they deserve, and provide them with space where we make sure that their emotional stability is duly prioritized and finds a balance. Psychological therapy is an excellent strategy for the prevention and treatment of trauma- and stressor-related disorders.
Share this message with the world so that every health care hero knows that they have your support, and that of the world, to overcome this pandemic. We can get through this!