When crises happen, staff in health and social services rise to the challenge. It’s what they do. No-one knew exactly what the impact of the new coronavirus, COVID-19, would be but it was clear that everyone would be required to adopt new and different ways of working. For many frontline staff, this meant taking on new roles and remits. Being in unfamiliar territory brings its own pressures, let alone the personal impacts on staff responding to the ever-increasing demands on them. Lessons from other countries that were ahead of Scotland in dealing with COVID-19 highlighted the various potential and actual effects on frontline staff and carers. These were taken into account in designing Scotland’s National Wellbeing Hub www.promis.scot
The Hub was launched in May as one of the national initiatives to support the wellbeing of staff and carers. Based on a Psychological First Aid framework, which is commonly used in crisis situations, the Hub provides access to supportive, practical resources and other material designed to enable staff and carers to self-care and cope effectively with the potential stresses of caring for people with COVID-19. It also signposts to help available in local and national services.
Reflecting the integrated service landscape in Scotland, the Wellbeing Hub is designed for health and social services staff in the statutory and third/independent sectors, and independent carers. The advice and support it offers ranges from the practical to the psychological, whether people are at home or in work.
The Hub has had more than 36,000 users since its launch, with around 1500 new users each week and it has received overwhelmingly positive feedback. It’s reassuring that staff have benefitted from this shared resource. We will be building on its success as we look forwards and the impact of the pandemic changes, to improve the way we support our diverse workforce, including disabled staff.
Collaboration with others such as Business Disability Forum, has ensured that the Hub’s content appropriately meets the diverse needs of staff. Business Disability Forum kindly contributed some of its guides to the Hub, to support disabled staff and line managers. The success of the Hub depends on such positive relationships and quality contributions and helps us deliver on our ambition: You look after us, so we’ll look after you.