How Positive Affirmation Text Messages Can Be Used to Address Healthcare Worker Burnout

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We've heard a lot over the past year and a half about how the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the healthcare world has affected healthcare workers. Many are burnt out and overwhelmed, and it's no wonder. Even those who aren't on the front lines of the fight against coronavirus have experienced more stress and burnout than ever before.

The idea of digital therapeutics is a relatively new approach that has been shown to help healthcare workers who are struggling. Positive affirmation text messages are just one example.

What does digital therapeutics mean?

Digital therapeutics, or DTx, is a way of helping people cope with trauma through digital means. It's not meant as a replacement for medication or psychology, of course—it's designed to augment those things, to help them solve problems for people who are suffering. The field of digital therapeutics has a wide range of treatment applications, from substance abuse and mental health treatment and beyond.

Whether it's a web-based software program or a text messaging initiative (more on that below), digital therapeutic treatments have been shown to benefit those who are suffering. And that can include healthcare professionals like nurses.

What are positive affirmation text messages?

Positive affirmation text messages are just what they sound like—positive texts sent to nurses to help them feel better about themselves and the work that they do. A positive affirmation text message might sound something like "Trust yourself and believe in what you can do. This past year has been rough on all of us, but you can and will survive what is to come."

There are formal text messaging programs, like one launched by the Arizona Nurses Assocation in the summer of 2020. But you don't have to participate in a formal program at your healthcare facility to help your nurses. Simply sending the occasional text message of this nature can make a huge difference.

Does it work?

The aforementioned program by the Arizona Nurses Association had extremely positive results. More than 86% of the nurses in the program found the resources improved their well-being. Almost half of the participants incorporated those resources into their daily lives. So, to put it simply, positive affirmation text messaging does work. It can really improve morale and culture at your facility, so consider giving it a try.

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Posted in General Healthcare, Managers on Dec 17, 2021