When Canada’s Healthcare Workers Suffer, We All Suffer

Amidst rising challenges in the healthcare industry, Wellness Together Canada and MindWell-U offer support to healthcare workers.

"I no longer do a job I love because it was basically killing me," Dr. Kari Sampsel told cbc.ca about her resignation in December 2021 after 15 years as an emergency room doctor.

Unfortunately, this is all too common among Canada’s healthcare workers who feel like they’re drowning in staff shortages and increased workload.

What typically began as a career chosen from a desire to help those who need it most, for far too many it has now become a career of burnout, exhaustion, and barely being able to keep their own head above water amidst the difficulties the industry is currently facing.

“The high rate of burnout and staff shortages in hospitals across the country has become an ‘endemic’”, as is stated in an article on cbc.ca. “The number of job vacancies among health-care practitioners — mostly in hospitals — increased almost 92 per cent in the September to December 2021 period compared to the same period pre-pandemic in 2019, Statistics Canada data show.”

Healthcare is not an industry that our country and its people can function without. Yet, if we continue the way we’re going, more and more healthcare workers will undoubtedly leave the profession when forced to choose between doing their job (taking care of the health of others) or caring for and managing their own physical and mental health.

The Life of a Typical Canadian Healthcare Worker

For many healthcare workers, the day begins already fatigued mentally and physically from an overworked week and lack of sound sleep. Anyone walking onto a unit can sense the lack of energy. It’s palpable. Everyone is tired. Everyone, it seems, has had enough.

People are off sick, so-and-so has quit, the new person needs to be shown the ropes and it seems everyone needs something from you. The little resources left are thinly stretched. Colleagues that once were willingly helpful, now wait for someone else to volunteer assistance. You do the same thing if you take a moment to think about it.

Relationships are strained, both on the team, between management levels and even with your patients. This frustrates you further as you know it’s not the patient’s fault, you know they are the reason you started this career in the first place, and yet there you are taking out some of your frustration at them.

You do your best to move forward and focus on tending to the health of your patients, but it’s simply too much.

It’s a drain physically, mentally and emotionally that takes a toll at work and at home.

All you and your colleagues want is some help to make it through a shift and yet it doesn’t come.

Burnout is imminent.

And with burnout comes more staffing shortages, more overworked healthcare workers and increased job vacancies. It’s a vicious self-perpetuating cycle. So what can we do?

Supporting the Health of Healthcare Workers

The solution to this dire situation is not simple and is situated within a complex system of healthcare that takes time to change. And yet, how can we immediately support our healthcare workers so they are better equipped for their roles, can better care for their patients, and improve their own mental health and resiliency?

The answer: MindWell for Healthcare Workers

MindWell for Healthcare Workers has been designed specifically for those working in the healthcare industry to reduce stress, overwhelm, exhaustion, PTSD symptoms and burnout in just four weeks. And, courtesy of Wellness Together Canada via Health Canada, the program is available to all healthcare workers across Canada at no charge.

Research shows that the thousands of healthcare workers who have participated in this program over the last year have seen incredible results, highlighted below:

Results of the MindWell for Healthcare Workers training show 92% of participants were satisfied with the training, 86% found a benefit to their mental health and well-being, 92% would recommend to colleagues, 88% enjoyed the overall user experience and 82% found an improvement to stress management
Results from past participants of MindWell for Healthcare Workers

How it works:

  • Click here to register for the program which begins Monday, October 31st, 2022

  • Gain access to the MindWell portal and the bilingual four-week self-paced online learning experience

  • Commit to just 10-15 minutes of learning each week

  • Join a Live Lab to connect with other healthcare professionals and accelerate your results

  • Notice positive, lasting changes in mental health, resilience and overall well-being

Your Opportunity to Help Canada’s Healthcare Workers (and Patients)

For the health of our healthcare workers and the patients across the country who rely on them each and every day, please share this program far and wide on social media, via email, or any other avenue you have to reach as many healthcare professionals as possible.

The link to register for the program: https://www.wellnesstogether.ca/en-CA/healthcare-workers
Program Begins: Monday, October 31st, 2022

For more information on how to take part in this program, or to bring this program to your health organization, please contact MindWell today.

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