President’s Message, GNA starts Virtual Support Group for COVID-19 front line nurses, Secondary Traumatic Stress counseling for nurses
I see you working at the front line during the current COVID-19 pandemic. I see and hear your fear, uncertainty, sense of desperation, frustration and pain. We are fighting a war against an invisible enemy that spreads fast and without mercy, and we lack the necessary amount of personnel, resources, and, frankly, knowledge to stop it once and for all.
But this is not the first time in our history that we answered the call to care in uncharted territory. Our predecessors did it, holding on to the hope that one day they would win, one day the crisis will be part of the past. They held tight to their calling and moved forward every day, moment by moment, patient by patient.
Now it is our turn. In the time that the pandemic has grown, we have demonstrated once again why we continue to hold the title of the #1 Most Trusted Profession for 18 years in a row and why 2020 is the Year of the Nurse and Mid-Wife.
For many of our nurses, this is their first public health emergency. Be proud that right now you are an essential and influential part of history. That because of your decision to become a nurse, today someone’s father receives the care he needs to be well. Be proud that you have the mental, emotional, and physical ability to take care of someone in great need and make a positive difference. And be honored that you count with the heartwarming support of the public and their recognition of your self-sacrifice. Your labor of love is not in vain.
We became nurses to care for our patients and communities, and they need us now more than ever. We need each other more than ever. The public can rest assured that we will continue to be there for them.
Until the supply chain for personal protection equipment (PPE) improves, like in any war, let’s conserve, bundle care, keep ourselves safe, and work together to provide care to all our patients. As testing improves, with quicker turnaround times, the PPE’s used for the PUI’s will decrease, freeing up supplies.
If you are not serving at the front lines, help us by staying home, going out for only essential needs. We need you to check on your neighbors from a social distance, to limit in person interactions with others and instead use tele-communications with family, friends and professional colleagues. We need you to share supplies when you can, and to remind others to do their part and have peace because this too shall pass.
Nurses at the front lines, I ask you to let me and the GNA Team know about your experience during these times. I invite you to take the following survey and to join us on Tuesday, March 31st at 12:00 PM for our first GNA COVID-19 Virtual Support Group for Front Line Nurses.
GNA COVID-19 Virtual Support Group for Front Line Nurses access link: https://zoom.us/j/490830057.
The first session will be moderated by Dr. Betsy Gard, PhD. We want to hear from our nurses on their concerns and how they are coping, as we face this pandemic. We will hear from you about your concerns and provide an update on what we are doing on behalf of the nurses of Georgia to combat COVID 19. Then Dr. Gard will provide guidance and give resiliency tips to help us deal with our own concerns and to help others.
Lastly, The Walk of Life Counseling Center is offering counseling to front line nurses. If you mention that you are a GNA Member, your first session is free. You may schedule a tele- therapy appointment at 404-823-6254.
Let’s be kind to one another. Let’s talk and treat each other with compassion. Let’s support each other.
Richard Lamphier, RN
Georgia Nurses Association