February 7th, 2015
It is vital to address caregivers, given the stress levels and the rate of burnout in the healthcare community. Much like teachers, it seems that those working in healthcare don’t seem to have a mechanism to refuel their tank in a healthy manner on an ongoing basis. We believe that contemplative practices significantly help those in this line of work.
Given the demand to attend to more patients per hour, the reduction of payments and pressure to reduce costs, coupled with the expectation of electronic medical records and other documentation, healthcare professionals are at their wits end. They tend to rush around all day, only to repeat the cycle all over again the next day. Their schedule never seems to slow down, between shifts and call duty, and many cannot seem to integrate well with the demands of their personal life.
Even though they are in the healthcare business, they don’t have the time to take care of themselves. They are also frustrated with the system and many believe that it restricts them from effectively dealing with, treating and healing their patients.
Unless and until this community of caregivers is provided with an effective channel to refill their depleted energy tanks, it is impossible to envision a productive and fulfilling career for these professionals.
The Mindful Nation’s Healthcare in Mind campaign is designed to teach clinical professionals in our medical community to adopt certain simple practices that have proven to help improve their resilience to high levels of stress caused by overwork and concern for the well-being of their patients. Working closely with physicians, we’ve learned that the best approach to bringing such education to them is to utilize their peers – other trained physicians. Our first physician initiative is being piloted at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worchester, MA, and will be later applied to the Kansas University Medical School in Wichita.
Providing physicians, physician’s assistants and the nursing staff with avenues to replenish their energy and manage the stress resulting from the multitude of demands on a daily basis is the primary goal of the programs offered under the Healthcare in Mind campaign.
While we are doing so much with so little, it does take the support of key partners and visionary donors in communities across the country to help scale this movement and truly realize a Mindful Nation. Please commit to supporting our programs today with your financial contribution and your energy – and be the spark that transforms our nation.