BLOGINDUSTRY TRENDS Help Manage Healthcare Employee Stress

 

Most jobs have some element of stress to them, but healthcare employee stress is at an entirely different level. Even in the best of times, nurses, doctors, and other healthcare staff members are faced with long hours of emotionally and physically taxing work. Then add in the pandemic of the last two years and the stress has skyrocketed. It is important to find ways to provide relief to your employees in their daily jobs. Here are a few ways to do that including strategically working with AV design consultants.

Offer Mental Health Spaces

First, consider how your facility handles employee mental health. Does your organization have an onsite mental health professional who can meet with team members during times of intense stress? Do employees have the option of taking personal mental health days?  If neither of these is the case, there are still other possibilities to explore.

For example, you might not be able to provide onsite professional mental health services, but you could create wellness spaces to support employees in need. Spatial, an immersive audio company and software service, partnered with Catalyst by Wellstar to create a series of wellness rooms. The introduction of these calming environments gave frontline workers the opportunity to reduce stress and anxiety while in the midst of an overwhelming workday.

Provide Stress Management Education 

Managing stress is essential for healthcare professionals to maintain inner peace. While many people on your staff may already have their own go-to methods of letting off steam like yoga or painting, some may not know where to start.

If you already have interactive TVs onsite to educate patients about health and wellness, why not use them for employee education as well? Strategically placing AV displays in key personnel areas, like risk management, HR, and nursing stations makes it easier to relay messaging around mental health and personal well-being.  Providing a basic, visual overview of free-to-use stress management techniques, like deep breathing and improving the quality of nutrition and sleep, can go a long way.

You could also offer guided meditations for workers to try during their breaks, create an outdoor space in the sunshine for them to eat their meals, and get a break from the sterile, fluorescent environment they are in all day. Do what you can to help aid in stress reduction; even little adjustments can make a big impact.

Find Opportunities To Reduce Friction

When a job is already stressful, like so many are in healthcare, minor annoyances can be enough to trigger your body to release cortisol. It is important to identify ways to streamline healthcare employees’ workflows and help remove points of friction.

Take a walk around the areas your staff frequents most. Are there any physical impediments that get in the way of necessary tasks? Are there environmental issues (like loud and/or grating noises) that might trigger unnecessary stress? Depending on what you uncover, you may be able to redesign workflows and/or use AV solutions to make their daily job smoother.

By Sarah Seavey
Sarah Seavey