2/2/2021 12:00:00 AM
This alert addresses concerns received from health care workers and provides learnings and examples that may be helpful as health care organizations continue to respond to the current pandemic and prepare for future challenges that will require safe, healthy and engaged health care workers. The Joint Commission’s Office of Quality and Patient Safety (OQPS) has received COVID-19-specific comments from more than 2,000 health care workers, patients, families, government agencies and more. Three main concerns or fears were identified: fear of the unknown, fear of getting sick, and fear of bringing the virus home. Five key ways to support health care workers were provided:
1. Foster open and transparent communication to build trust, reduce fears, build morale, and sustain an effective workforce.
2. Remove barriers to health care workers seeking mental health services and develop systems that support institutional, as well as individual resilience.
3. Protect workers’ safety using the National Institute of Occupational Health and Safety (NIOSH) Hierarchy of Controls framework.
4. Develop a flexible workforce; evaluate the work being performed and determine if it can be performed remotely.
5. Provide clinicians and others with opportunities to collaborate, lead and innovate.
Each of the strategies are extensively discussed in the alert.
personal protective equipment (PPE), masks
Voices from the pandemic: Health care workers in the midst of crisis