03 April 2020
The Royal College of Psychiatrists has released a statement clarifying the important role that psychiatrists continue to have during the COVID-19 pandemic in delivering care for their patients.
The statement also outlines some key ways in which psychiatrists can lend their skills and knowledge to support their colleagues working in hospital settings – from helping to foster cohesion and peer support networks, to providing rapid mental health assessments of frontline staff.
The statement is intended to assist psychiatrists to act in a way that is helpful when being asked to support their clinical colleagues and protect their mental health.
A core axiom is to recognise that acute hospitals already have good team structures and their own support and leadership systems in place, and they should not be disrupted. The statement describes a range of possible interventions that take this into account, following a preventative model of occupational mental health.