Voice memos from health workers around the world are being collected via a private WhatsApp chat group to capture their experiences of the Covid-19 pandemic and improve future preparedness.
Led by researchers in the Nossal Institute for Global Heath at the University of Melbourne, the Covid-19 Health Worker Voices project will analyse stories and collate key lessons about health systems’ responses to the pandemic across a range of places and different time periods.
Researchers said the project also responds the World Health Organisation’s (WHO’s) recommendation about the importance of engaging with and supporting health workers, which emerged during the Ebola outbreak in West Africa in 2014-16 and is crucial to fighting Covid-19.
During the current pandemic it is critical to find new ways to engage with healthcare workers and discover, in real time and without filtering, what their frustrations, obstacles, triumphs and difficulties are, explained lead researcher Dr Daniel Strachan. “We want to know what helps and what works well during these crises. Healthcare workers may have previously been unable to voice their concerns about their work for a range of reasons. We want to give them that chance as well as to share their successes.
“By giving healthcare workers access to an anonymous and encrypted application, we hope that they will feel able to voice the things that matter most to them.”
The project is open to all healthcare professionals including GPs, non-GP specialists, nurses, carers and allied health professionals.
For more information about the Covid-19 Health Worker Voices project and to participate, go to: https://mspgh.unimelb.edu.au/healthworkervoices.