Now, more than ever, healthcare workers need help and support. The pandemic brought many changes and risks with it, and it is the healthcare workers who have been on the frontline this entire time.
Alongside the increase in risk has been an increase in hours, a decrease in supplies, and a higher chance of mental health and emotional fatigue. So, what can the average person do to help give back to healthcare workers?
Help Them Obtain Proper PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
Even with a readily distributed vaccine, supply and demand are still a problem when it comes to PPE. Help make sure that those that need it most can get their hands on it. Donate when possible (either PPE items or funds), but ensure that the money/items are going to the right place. The Hackensack Meridian Health’s foundation has made donating easy, as each hospital can use its foundation to receive funds.
Say Thank You
A simple ‘thank you’ can go a long way in showing one’s appreciation. Sometimes, a bad day can turn into a good one just by a little bit of acknowledgment, especially for those who work overtime for what is frequently considered a thankless job.
The odds are good that any healthcare worker you know is facing some level of struggles at the moment. Be available to listen; if they’re asking you to stay home, do it. If they’re providing specific instructions, listen attentively and following their advice.
If you see a healthcare worker looking for a moment of human contact, where they can process everything they’ve gone through, consider being that person. Small actions like this add up and can end up saving the day.
Follow CDC Guidelines and State Protocols
One of the best ways to help healthcare workers right now is by making their jobs easier. One can do that by following the guidelines put into place by the CDC and the state. Wear masks according to these mandates, practice social distancing, isolate yourself if exposed, and get the vaccine as soon as possible.
Knowing When to Go to the Hospital and When to Call
First things first, whenever considering heading to urgent care or primary care, call first. This will help them organize and prepare, especially if you suspect you’ve been exposed and need to be tested.
Hospitals are still facing overwhelming numbers of patients in urgent need of care due to COVID-19. Unfortunately, that doesn’t magically make every other health concern and emergency go away. Here is an excellent write-up to help people decide when it is time to go to the emergency room.