Identifying COVID-19 Impacts on Healthcare Workers and Pennsylvania as a Trauma-Informed State

Christine Tarlecki
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With the healthcare industry projecting that pandemic-induced PTSD and other psychological impacts are the next health crisis, HR professionals from across industries, as well as healthcare workers and administrators, gathered for “COVID-19 Impacts on Healthcare Workers and PA as a Trauma-Informed State.”

The virtual conference was recently held by the Chester County Economic Development Council and its Health Care Connect initiative.

“What can employers do to support healthcare and non-healthcare employees now and in the wake of COVID-19? What issues can they expect to face – and for how long? Why is Pennsylvania becoming a ‘trauma-informed state’ and what does that mean for employers, workers, and other residents?

These are among the issues we addressed, along with the latest on vaccine distribution and its impacts,” said Dr. Claire Mooney, Chair of Health Care Connect and President and CEO of Jennersville and Brandywine hospitals.

Representing the Commonwealth was Dan Jurman, Executive Director of Pennsylvania’s Office of Advocacy and Reform. Jurman addressed a wide range of issues, including what all employers should know as Pennsylvania moves through the process of becoming a trauma-informed state.

The issue of frontline fatigue was examined in depth by Bill Belmonte, Emergency Department Nurse Manager at Paoli Hospital, Chester County’s only certified trauma center.

Also speaking was Karen Oxler, former Deputy Surgeon General of Navy Medicine and currently the Executive Director at Philadelphia’s VA, the Corporal Michael J. Crescenz VA Medical Center.

Oxler addressed the treatment of frontline fatigue and examined the moral distress and PTSD that healthcare workers and administrators are experiencing.

In addition to the video above, listen to COVID-19 impacts coverage by KYW Newsradio, and watch an interview with NBC10 News.

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