Providing Better Care Through Self-Care
Each year we help thousands of youth and adults struggling with depression, anxiety, trauma, substance abuse, suicidal thoughts and feelings of violence. Last year we helped 3,456 youth and adults in our hospitals, offering 9,731 individual therapy sessions to youth, conducted 300 therapeutic virtual reality sessions, and provided 39,266 patent days of care.
While these numbers are large and incredible, we are always focused on why we exist as an organization. We work everyday because people matter, we want to help youth heal, and we want youth to be healthy and happy. The outcomes of what we do matter. The quality of care that we provide at KVC Hospitals is written on our walls and engaged in our training.
While the work we do can be challenging, we strive to take care of ourselves and each other so that we can provide better care to those who come to KVC Hospitals for help.
“At KVC Hospitals, we place a high value on self-care with not only our clients but also our staff,” said Annmarie Arensberg, Associate Clinical Director of KVC Hospitals. “We recognize how tough of a job this can be and the challenges employees face working in this environment.”
What is self-care?
Self-care is care provided by you for you. It’s a way of maintaining a healthy lifestyle and managing stress. Self-care is taking the time to do things you enjoy that nurture your ability to continue your life in a happy and positive way.
“Self-care looks different to each individual and as a team we have to learn how to best support each employee in their needs,” said Lori Wheelhouse, Clinical Director of KVC Hospitals.
Here’s some ways you can practice self-care:
- Regularly attend your doctor, dentist and mental health appointments
- Eat healthy foods
- Get enough sleep
- Exercise regularly
- Connect with friends and community groups
- Journal or find a healthy outlet to express your emotions
- Read a book
- Learn something new by attending a class about something you might enjoy
How KVC Hospitals promotes self-care:
Self-care is important and vital to working in such a challenging field. Even the most well-balanced, well-educated, well-seasoned staff understand the daily challenges and acknowledge the need to engage in ways of taking care of oneself and making sure his or her bucket is filled. The likelihood of job fatigue is very high in this field and without adequate tools to take care of oneself, many struggle to maintain the workload and emotional stress one can feel. Even the most simple self-care activities are important like getting enough sleep, eating a balanced diet, and balancing work life and home life.
Employees at KVC Hospitals practice self-care to improve stress levels, improve physical and emotional health and to ultimately provide better care to the children and teens in treatment. Here’s what KVC Hospitals does to promote self-care:
- Encourages staff to utilize support with their peers and their supervisor
- Regularly offers skill building to practice emotion regulation, deep breathing, meditation
- Offers Employee Assistance Programs
- Utilizes the TAK application, an employee engagement tool that allows staff to thank your fellow employees and post it on a news feed viewable by all employees
- Provides an open door policy with leadership to seek support during challenging moments
When our employees are fulfilled, we can provide better outcomes for our clients. Last year, 99% of youth successfully completed treatment and 97% of youth showed improvement in trauma-related symptoms within the first 7 days of treatment.