Caring for Health Professionals in the COVID-19 Pandemic Emergency: Toward an “Epidemic of Empathy” in Healthcare

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16 Citazioni (Scopus)

Abstract

Psychological research into healthcare opened the door to understanding people's emotional reactions when experiencing events perceived as life-threatening. This is the case of the current outbreak of the novel Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that has recently been declared “a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC)” by the World Health Organization (WHO). The response to an influenza pandemic might generate remarkable stress and emotional turmoil to healthcare providers who work during the outbreak. Prior experience with disasters, pandemics, and major traumatic events indicates that enhanced support to healthcare professionals enabling them to become aware of their own emotions and effectively share their perspective and lived experience with patients can help them in remaining efficient and focused during these stressful events. This outbreak marks a vital moment where healthcare systems can endorse an “epidemic of empathy” aimed at bringing science and humanism together to benefit patients and consolidate citizens' trust in healthcare providers during this and future healthcare crisis. Perhaps, the greatest opportunity for managing people fears during health emergencies—like the COVID-19 one—lies, in the short term, in restoring our connections with each other. Today, we are all called to rebuild a sense of community and the ties that bind us together as human beings.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)1431-N/A
RivistaFrontiers in Psychology
Volume11
DOI
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2020

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • empathy
  • healthcare professionals
  • medical humanities
  • medical psychology
  • patient-doctor communication

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