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COVID-19 health care workers facing mental health strain – Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City, Missouri 2021-01-18 13:17:23 –

Washington DC — Almost a year after the first official COVID-19 diagnosis in the United States, healthcare professionals remain at the forefront of a seemingly endless pandemic.

Helen Cordoba, an ICU nurse at Kaiser Permanente in Los Angeles, said:

It’s a time of trial and has real consequences for the mental health of those we rely on for our health.

According to a recent survey conducted by Mental Health America

  • 93% of healthcare professionals reported experiencing stress
  • 86 percent reported anxiety
  • 76% used up and burned out
  • 75% said they were overwhelmed

“I don’t know what happens when I work in such an environment,” said Dr. Eugene Lipov at the Stella Center, which specializes in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). “It’s stressful because you’re afraid of not doing your job right. You don’t want people to die, and you’re worried that you’ll get this infection.”

He said some people working in health care are showing symptoms of PTSD due to the constant psychological sacrifice that COVID-19 suffers.

“It’s very similar to being in a war zone, which leads to the launch of a system of actual fighting or flight,” Dr. Lipov said. “If that continues, all activities, delusions, and other symptoms of PTSD, such as sleeplessness, will appear.”

How can workers fight it? Dr. Lipov suggested several steps.

“First, you need to get some sleep, which means you need to turn off your device,” he said. “Go outside, walk, soak up the natural light and walk for at least 30 minutes.”

Finally, he said, healthcare professionals need to remember to take care of themselves with the same passion that they often show to patients.

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