It’s fitting that the theme for this year’s National Nurses Week (May 6-12) celebration is “You make a difference.” Indeed, they do. Nurses are the unsung heroes of healthcare.
While we honor nurses for their incredible work, it’s also important to recognize the challenges they face, particularly stress and burnout.
The COVID-19 pandemic shone a spotlight on the high levels of stress encountered by healthcare providers, including nurses who were at the frontlines of the worst public health crisis in more than a century.
They witnessed extreme grief and frustration as they fought to save the lives of patients, while at the same time trying to avoid catching the virus or taking it home to loved ones.
Unfortunately, the pandemic brought out the worst in some people as they became combative over masks, treatments and vaccines.
Once again, the nurses bore the brunt of the abuse. Stress levels reached the breaking point, resulting in a mass exodus from the profession.