Review: Reflections on resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic – six lessons from working in resource-denied settings

Home/Review: Reflections on resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic – six lessons from working in resource-denied settings

Review: Reflections on resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic – six lessons from working in resource-denied settings

Review: Reflections on resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic – six lessons from working in resource-denied settings

This article outlines lessons from the authors’ experiences as Western practitioners working in resource-denied settings to inform the response to COVID-19 for frontline healthcare workers in high-income countries, who are typically unaccustomed to vulnerability and resource scarcity at a national level.

The six lessons described are:

  • “What flexibility really means”
  • “Find expertise in places you may not have thought to look before”
  • “Blend interpersonal relationships and work; adapt your perception of time”
  • “Use challenging situations as opportunities to advocate”
  • “Being a HCW when resources are scarce is traumatic”
  • “Accept some realities you cannot change and look back the right way.”

The authors emphasize the importance of adapting practice to dynamically changing situations and acknowledging that existing approaches may not be effective or appropriate to the current circumstances. They note the importance of recognizing the relevance of approaches from the global South to resource scarcity, such as creative means of reusing or making PPE, sterilizing limited resources, or treatment modalities that bypass costly medications. They also look to these other cultures for the concept of polychronic time and adaptation to uncertainty and unexpected challenges. Additionally, the authors stress the importance of advocacy on behalf of vulnerable patients and communities, as well as the need for healthcare workers to protect their own mental and physical health.

|2020-04-24T08:37:57-04:00April 24th, 2020|COVID-19 Literature|Comments Off on Review: Reflections on resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic – six lessons from working in resource-denied settings

About the Author: Daniel Orenstein

Daniel Orenstein
Daniel G. Orenstein, JD, MPH, is Visiting Assistant Professor of Law at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law in Indianapolis. He teaches in the areas of administrative law, public health law, and health care law and policy. His research focuses on public health law, policy, and ethics, and he was previously Deputy Director of the Network for Public Health Law Western Region, where much of his work centered on emergency preparedness and response, including resource allocation and government authority during declared emergencies, as well as vaccination policy.

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