Covenant Health Plainview unveils caregiver support group

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COVID-19 is taking a heavy toll on the mental health of caregivers on the frontlines. 

With cases rising in Hale County, more patients are checking into Covenant Plainview. With only 300 caregivers and 100 beds, staff say it's overwhelming. 

"Most of our patients that come here - they're friends; they're neighbors, they're people that we see at church; they're people that we see at United and Walmart. And it they're not close with us, they're close with somebody that we know," Mission Services Manager Sherrie Wall said. "So it's really hard when you put out all that you can and it's still not enough, and you still lose them - that's devastating."

The new group is designed to support the mental health and well-being and provides one-on-one conversation with team members.

"I come in at seven and I see the nighttime staff going home and you look at them and you say 'hey how are you doing? How's your day?' And they say 'oh I'm good.' But you see, behind their mask you look at their eyes and you see they are not good," she said.

It's intended to help staff deal with the psychological effects of seeing friends and family die of COVID-19.

"I want all of our staff just to be able to rely and know you are not in this alone we are a team and were gonna remain strong," Wall said. 

CEO of Covenant Health Plainview Alan King says, even though caregivers are tired and stressed, he's proud they're stepping up to help each other.

"That's exciting when one person starts to kind of slip, there is another support system that steps up," he said. 

The support group started this week. All staff is encouraged to share - whether it be stress, burn-out or questions on how to maintain self-care.

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