CONWAY, Ark. — Conway Regional Health System has come up with new ideas to protect its frontline workers from burnout during the pandemic. Some nurses and staff said it’s hard sometimes to keep up morale and motivation.
For frontline COVID-19 nurses, putting their feet up is a luxury.
The hospital’s new lounge provides valuable sit-down time for nurses like Hannah Ray, RN.
“And true relaxation to where we can sit down and take a moment and just not think about everything else that’s going on around us,” Ray said.
The lounge is just one part of the hospital’s plan to protect the house.
“The hospital knows that everyone is struggling,” Ray said.
Conway Regional is doing what it can to help staff with work-life balance and resiliency.
“We really tried to focus on those attributes of life that just kind of get in the way,” said CEO Matt Troup.
Little things like having to think about dinner.
The hospital now offers meals for staff to take home to their families.
It’s a much-appreciated gesture.
“Having to go home and shower after you just walk in the door or you have to shower at work and then go home and then prepare a meal for your family, is hard,” Ray said.
And for staff with kids, free childcare is available.
“Just the parents to have a break for a little bit or for the kids to have a break from all the chaos that’s going on because of how Covid has affected everything,” Ray said.
“We have to make sure that they’re valued and that they’re telling their story,” Troup said.
A story of strength and perseverance.
“We are not giving up,” Ray said.
Conway Regional is also offering all staff members free cafeteria lunches.
Troupe said the hospital didn’t lay anyone off during the pandemic.
“And that was a stance that we took early on that we were going to redeploy rather than unemploy,” Troup said.
Troup said they’ve hired about 50 additional employees to deal with Covid-19 tasks, such as working the COVID-19 drive-thru testing center, the call center, and conducting health screenings.
Conway Regional said over 20,000 tests have been conducted in their drive thru; 38,000 tests total have been conducted as an organization.
The hospital has received over 16,500 calls from its COVID-19 call center.
“We were able to quickly pivot to telemedicine, when COVID began, and have seen about 30 percent of our outpatient visits conducted via telehealth,” said Conway Regional spokesperson Rebekah Fincher.
“We are finding new and innovative ways that are convenient for patients to ensure they don’t have to put their healthcare on hold,” Fincher added.