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Coronavirus: NHS staff struggle with burnout as they warn hospital bosses about looming second wave

NHS workers are at breaking point after months of upheaval and high pressure during the coronavirus outbreak with hospital leaders warning the health service is facing a “perfect storm” of workforce shortages and a second wave of COVID-19.

In a survey of 140 NHS trust leaders almost all of them said they were worried about their staff suffering burnout ahead of winter.

They also sounded the alarm over concerns there had not been enough investment into social care before this winter.

NHS Providers, which carried out the survey ahead of its annual conference of hospital leaders, warned the first wave of COVID-19 had made a lasting impact on the health service which had yet to fully recover.

Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, which represents NHS trusts, said there had been “no let-up in the pressure” during the pandemic, which followed a difficult winter for staff.

“And while the response to the spring surge in COVID-19 cases showed the NHS at its best, the pressures took their toll on staff who gave so much,” he said.

“The worry is that the sustained physical, psychological and emotional pressure on health staff is threatening to push them beyond their limits of endurance.”

Almost all those who responded to the survey, 99 per cent, said they were either extremely or moderately concerned about the current level of burnout across the workforce.

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Source: The Independent, 6 October 2020


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