Post a description of the national healthcare issue/stressor you selected for analysis, and explain how the healthcare issue/stressor may impact your work setting. Then, describe how your health system work setting has responded to the healthcare issue/stressor, including a description of what changes may have been implemented. Be specific and provide examples.
The National healthcare issue I find has led to serious and numerous issues for the healthcare field and workers is misinformation about the Covid virus. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory tract disease stemming from infection with coronavirus 2 acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV-2); COVID-19 has become a global pandemic in recent months, presenting a significant public health problem for many nations’ healthcare systems. At the same time various myths, disinformation, and conspiracy theories about the pathophysiology, outcomes, prevention, and treatment of the disease have appeared on many social media sites(Tasnim et al,2020a). This falsehood about COVID-19 is created in many ways, such as unsubstantiated claims that portray the virus as being developed in a laboratory for use as a biological weapon; religious fundamentalists who propagate misinformation that those who pray to the almighty would not be harmed by the virus(Barua et al,2020). The 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has not only created major problems for healthcare systems across the world, but has also fuelled the emergence of various myths, hoaxes, and disinformation about the disease’s etiology, results, prevention, and cure(Tasnim et al,2020b). This propagation of misinformation masks healthy behaviors and promotes misconduct (such as refusal to wear a mask, or practice social distancing)that enhances the spread of the virus and eventually leads to poor physical and mental health outcomes among people.
A multitude of mishap accidents triggered by these rumors has been recorded worldwide. As a result of these behaviors, the healthcare field has seen a record level of infected patients. The increasing workload on healthcare staff who were already suffering in some hospital from high staff turn out. In addition, another effect of the disinformation of the COVID 19 virus has resulted in individuals, buying and taking medications without a physician’s prescription. Misinformation in different media can lead to death-and-life threatening consequences. For example, a resident in Phoenix, Arizona, consumed chloroquine (commonly used to clean fish tanks)and died after hearing on the news that chloroquine can cure COVID-19 (Barua et al, 2020). This individual’s wife survived but landed in an ICU for treatment, adding to an increasing number of patients, already in that ICU at the time. Another consequence of these misinformations has been the loss of healthcare workers to the actual disease; leading to increased demand and workload on staff, created by low staff availability.
To Combat the misinformation, health care providers and staff have had to use social media to express their grievances, frustration, and despair with dealing with individuals both inside and outside of the hospital who have chosen to ignore the truth about this virus because of other stories they have heard about the disease. Some providers have used social media sites to plead and informed the general population about their daily struggle with treating patients with virus pleading with them to follow the recommendation from their physicians. Furthermore, some healthcare providers or Infodemic fighters have started approaching individuals where they are in the continuum of misinformation(Boyle,2020a). By using different methods when educating their patients. Tactics such as Using facts, not lecture, focusing on shared goals, building on relationships, not challenging individual’s core believes, and meeting people at their level (Boyle, 2020). Also by recommending sites such as the Center for Disease Control for scientific base information, such as methods of contamination, obstetrical care, signs and symptoms to look for, just to name a few(CDC, 2020)
Finally, now that there are talks about a vaccine, the credibility of new scientific findings of possible treatments or vaccine candidates for this disease is also being diminished by this phenomenon. With a huge amount of misinformation floating in the air, consequent public responses will be unfavorable and lead to detrimental consequences. Furthermore, as individual responses, people may not follow the guidelines provided by recognized national and international health organizations because of their ignorance, here in the states but especially in the developing and under-developed countries for many reasons(Barua, 2020).
As frontline healthcare providers we ought to continue to be prepared and inform so we can continue to safely provide for our patients. However, we also deserve the consideration of the people we care for and members of our leadership when we put our life on the line to keep everyone safe. Thus strategic alliances should be developed and common channels for the dissemination of authentic public health messages should be launched by the news media, health agencies, community-based organizations, and other important stakeholders(Tasnim et al,2020)
Barua, Z., Barua, S., Aktar, S., Kabir, N., & Li, M. (2020). Effects of misinformation on COVID-19 individual responses and recommendations for resilience of disastrous consequences of misinformation. Progress in Disaster Science, 8, 100119. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pdisas.2020.100119
Boyle,P.(2020).Rumors, confusion, and conspiracies: Can doctors defeat COVID-19 misinformation?.https://www.aamc.org/news-insights/rumors-confusion-and-conspiracies-can-doctors-defeat-covid-19-misinformation
Center for disease control[CDC](2020, November 18).Clinical Questions about COVID-19: Questions and Answers.https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/faq.html
Tasnim, S., Hossain, M. M., & Mazumder, H. (2020). Impact of Rumors and Misinformation on COVID-19 in Social Media. Journal of preventive medicine and public health = Yebang Uihakhoe chi, 53(3), 171–174. https://doi.org/10.3961/jpmph.20.094
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