As the Covid-19 pandemic continues, every member of staff at UHCW is working incredibly hard to support patients and their families in every way that they possibly can.

At UHCW, we are very aware that, in addition to prioritising the welfare of patients and their families it’s vitally important that we consider and support staff well-being as the emotional, social and physical pressures of working within a pandemic very much continue for all involved.

Thanks to your kind donations, Schwartz Rounds has been very successfully established at UHCW, led by Acute Medicine Consultant, Dr Amie Burbridge. This facility offers staff the opportunity to discuss the emotional, social and physical challenges and impacts of working in healthcare; to share experiences and to benefit from the empathy and support of those who fully understand. The resource will extend throughout the current crisis and beyond.

Katy Moon, Clinical Education Facilitator, shares her experiences of Schwartz Rounds with us below to give an insight into how they have helped her, both professionally and personally.

“In an environment where we are expected to show constant compassion to our patients, it is easy to forget to be kind to each other and ourselves. ‘Compassion Fatigue’ and ‘Moral Distress’ are not terms we hear often, but I believe as Healthcare Professionals it is something we see or experience daily. The pandemic has heightened pre-existing anxiety in an already stressful, demanding and high pressured environment. In a large hospital such as ours camaraderie and community feeling can easily get lost.

Schwartz Rounds offer a safe space and forum for staff to share experiences and feelings. As Healthcare workers we are often told to be ‘resilient’, ’toughen up’ or ‘you’ll harden to it’. If we show emotion it’s often seen as a lack of resilience, or even a weakness.

By having these forums where we can share our emotions we’re not only demonstrating openness and compassion, we are forming a culture that embodies community and solidarity. Schwartz Rounds are changing the script. If you’re not ready to share, that’s ok, everyone is welcome – even if they just want to listen or observe.

Personally, Schwartz Rounds have reminded me that we are all human, that it is important not to judge, and to be kind to one another. Everyone has personal stresses made worse by the pandemic – these don’t disappear when we walk into the hospital. Not everyone is comfortable being this open and that’s okay, but hearing other people’s experiences both personal and professional has been more reassuring than I can put into words.

I am so grateful to Dr Amie Burbridge for introducing Schwartz Rounds to UHCW, as well as Chaplain Simon Betteridge and the Faith Centre team for supporting – but most importantly to those that have donated to make this possible. Without your donations staff wouldn’t have access to this vital support.”

Your generous donations enable us to continue to make a huge difference to the well-being of so many of our staff and, therefore in turn, to our patients and their families. Donate here