2019 is the Year Of Caregiver Retention at Gere Consulting when we explore different ways home care agencies can reduce the very high level of caregiver turnover.
We know that compassion fatigue is a problem in health care. The senior care industry is not immune to it. In fact, some of our best caregivers are most prone to it. Caregivers frequently exposed to emotional challenges and the stress of caring from clients suffering from different conditions can experience high stress. One reaction to stress is to become numb to the causes of the stress. This is when compassion fatigue creeps in.
Compassion fatigue is one cause of turnover. In a multi-prong effort to reduce turnover, introducing tools to reduce stress and improve mindfulness at work is worthwhile. Dr. Laurel Geise is the co-founder of Mindful Caring. She believes that tools focused on self-care for caregivers are the most relevant to prevent burnout.
I met Dr. Geise at a conference in Atlanta in 2017. Her presentation on mindfulness really spoke to me as a regular practitioner of yoga. It was really intriguing to learn how mindfulness practices can benefit the workplace in general and caregivers in particular. Read my interview to learn more
Q: What is mindfulness?
Dr. Laurel Geise: Mindfulness is paying attention in a particular way: on purpose and in the moment. It is also known as situational awareness, being more aware of what is happening inside of you and outside of you. Simple daily mindfulness practices are the foundation of the Mindful Caring program, to enhance situational awareness and address compassion fatigue.
Q: Tell us about the Mindful Caring program you offer home care agencies.
Dr. Laurel Geise: Mindful Caring is a training and certification program that helps healthcare providers implement a Mindfulness Program to deliver better quality care and improve patient outcomes. Ultimately, our mission is to provide better care to achieve better outcomes. Using mindfulness tools have proven to reduce compassion fatigue and improve the ability for caregivers to provide compassionate care. If you care for yourself, you give better care to others. As we serve our clients, compassionate care is the key to being the Employer of Choice and the Provider of Choice in your market.
Dr. Geise also shared a recent case study where mindfulness practices have made an impact on caregivers in California.
Renee Concialdi, President of Right at Home Pasadena, is a leader in bringing Mindful Caring to her team and her caregivers. Her goal is to be the Employer of Choice for caregivers and the Provider of Choice for clients in her market.
In 2018 Right At Home Pasadena started with training the office team who experienced multiple benefits. They reported enhanced focus, better team communication, and less stress thanks to Mindful Caring. Here are their testimonials:
“It allows me to have awareness, flexibility and attention to the task at hand. It slows down my need to rush and to prioritize what is crucial at that moment.”
“I experience a sense of calm. I am more in tune to my environment and surroundings and I am able to make more sound decisions.”
All of these benefits contribute to creating a more productive and happier work environment.
The agency trained its caregivers and noticed an improvement in caregiver and patient scores measured by Home Care Pulse. After learning simple mindfulness practices, caregivers also experienced some positive changes in their mindset and work experience:
“I practice when my mind starts to feel overcrowded with thoughts.”
“Helps me focus on things that are happening in that moment.”
“I can use mindful listening when my clients talk to me about their feelings.”
“When I feel better about myself, I act with more patience and kindness.”
To learn more about Mindful Caring, visit www.MindfulCaring.net today.
Connect with Dr. Laurel Geise: Laurel@MindfulCaring.net
Dr. Laurel Geise, MBA, D.Min., is Co-Founder of Mindful Caring, www.MindfulCaring.net, a training and certification company that helps healthcare companies to implement mindfulness at work programs to deliver better quality care and improve patient outcomes. Combining 30 years as an executive in Fortune 500 companies and 23 years as a mindfulness trainer, Laurel is a leader in the mindfulness at work movement.