Many health and social care workers across England have faced an unprecedented threat to their health and wellbeing. As key workers the pressure to attend work during the pandemic has caused a huge surge in cases of mental health. According to The Health Foundation 56% of people are suffering from stress or anxiety and over two thirds of people have reported being worried about the effects COVID-19 is having on their life.

“The shocks associated with COVID-19 are now pushing many towards greater fragility and pain: grief at the loss of loved ones; anxiety at the loss of jobs; isolation and restrictions on movement;
difficult family dynamics; uncertainty and fear for the future” “Healthcare workers are among those deeply affected”. Antonio Guterres, United Nations Secretary General (2020)

The Public Health Agency have issued guidance on supporting staff through this difficult time.

Casicare has gone one step further. All staff are now entitled to free counselling sessions provided by the organisation. All sessions are confidential and can support employees with mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, anger issues and much more.

Following the Thriving at Work Review (2017) Casicare have produced, implemented, and communicated a mental health plan to promote good mental health amongst employees. Part of this plan is also to support employees with existing mental health problems.

“The counselling provided can also be used for existing problems and is not just exclusive to issues surrounding COVID-19” Janet Thompson Director of Nursing at Casicare

COVID-19 has seen a shift in moral with many health and social care employees. Casicare is one of the few organisations to take additional action to support employees in all aspects of their lives to alleviate fears, anxieties and frustrations. As an ongoing programme to protect the health and wellbeing of its employees a strategy is being designed to introduce Mental Health Champions to the workplace. Details of this will be published in due course.

Catherine Parker – Catherine Parker Solutions

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