Background A pilot scheme was delivered during the COVID-19 pandemic to support staff at a local hospital to cope with the unprecedented traumatic situation. This highlighted shortfalls and the need to promote systemic change in wellbeing provision, to encourage a more robust and accessible programme of support for healthcare professionals in multi-disciplinary organisations working with grief, loss, and trauma pre/post bereavement.
Aims To develop multidisciplinary tailor-made support for healthcare professionals, embracing cultural diversity, self-sustaining resilience, and empowerment. This support will incorporate various approaches and will be developed to meet presenting needs. It will aim to improve communication and develop a greater understanding between staff teams and organisations, encouraging working in partnership. It will promote transparency and openness as opportunities for learning and improvement rather than blame and punishment. It will lessen work-related stress and anxiety, create a happier and more compassionate environment, which in turn will improve quality of care.
Methods Review of literature. Feedback analysis. Internal consultation via multidisciplinary steering group meetings. Liaise with wellbeing department to work in collaboration. Consultation with relevant local organisations. Secure premises. Funding application. Recruit staff. Recruit and train specialist volunteers to provide therapeutic support. Continuous service review and evaluation using core assessment outcomes.
Increased coping strategies, emotional resilience, and mental health, measured by Core 10 psychological assessment.
Increased peer and multidisciplinary support verified by group activity attendance and staff feedback.
Improved communication channels.
Staff training to deliver reflective practice and debriefs.
Development of a specialist volunteer team
A programme of workshops and therapeutic groups delivered to meet staff need.
Conclusion Evaluation showed increased awareness of the importance of self-care and peer support amongst healthcare professionals. Greater autonomy of support enabled a willingness to engage in wellbeing provision leading to additional coping strategies and resilience.
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