Healthcare workers experience a high rate of pressure, stress, and burnout, even before the global pandemic. Nurse burnout is a widespread phenomenon, one which is created due to emotional and physical exhaustion of the caregiver. This can then manifest into a lack of motivation, persistent feelings of frustration, and in turn, lower rate of work efficacy.
Many studies have investigated the impact of nurse burnout and stress on the patient outcomes. Studies have examined burnout in relation to failure to rescue, patient dissatisfaction, and increased mortality. Unfortunately, stress can compromise a nurses professional ability to provide high quality care. With a patient in any level of care, from routine to more critical care, there is no room for error. That is why MAMA (Mindfulness and Medical Administration) has been developed in partnership with St John of God Murdoch hospital.
MAMA was developed together with St John of God Murdoch. This program was created with the purpose of bringing mindfulness strategies into the medical administration process.
In creating this program, the team reviewed current medication administration errors, investigated why errors happen, and created holistic drug administration plans. Then, guided by the experienced Mindful Meditation Australia team, mindfulness plans were developed using approaches rooted in extensive research.
65 nurses participated in the initial MAMA training pilot, with seven sessions over two weeks in July 2020.
Despite having busy and demanding schedules, participants were able to identify several key moments where mindfulness could be practiced. These included mindful opportunities such as being attentive and aware when washing hands and checking drugs, playing music in the breakroom to relieve stress, and developing patient and empathetic relationships with patients. These measures, although small, create a huge difference for nursing staff.
Prior to training, 73% of nurses revealed that they did not have an ongoing mindfulness or meditation strategy for the drug administration process and patients. Post training, 89% of nurses commented that they intended to use mindfulness with patients, and a huge 92% made a commitment to use mindfulness during the drug administration process. Furthermore, 94% of participants feel confident to use mindfulness in the drug administration process and believe that it is an important part of the process, with 95% recommending this training for other nurses.
Armed with the knowledge and experience of creating mindful behaviours, nurses went on to use these practices not only at work during drug administration, but also at home. When travelling to or from the work environment, nurses are able to use their mindfulness techniques to create a calm and relaxed environment for themselves.
“I really want to thank Brayden and Kim for delivering an excellent program that was very well received, both by me and those in my team who assisted, and most importantly by the participants. You made a dynamic duo and complemented each other well. This is truly an exciting pilot and one that I look forward to measuring further through a follow up survey and of course through our medication error data!” - Kimberley Montgomery | Manager Quality & Risk