Investigating the impact of COVID-19 on newly qualified nurses
A new study we’ve funded is investigating the lasting psychological effects of COVID-19 on nurses early in their career, a quarter of whom have experienced symptoms related to PTSD.

Nurses are at the heart of our NHS, but many leave the medical profession soon after qualifying, with 30–60% of nurses leaving their first place of employment within one year. Now, the COVID-19 pandemic has made the transition from student to nurse even more challenging.

Using our £29,000 funding, researchers are building on previous work which studied the pressures on nurses in their first year of qualifying. In this follow-on study, the research team will look deeper into the effect that COVID-19 has had, and how organisations can better support nurses.

For the last 3 years, researchers at City, University of London School of Health Sciences have studied 190 newly qualified Barts Health NHS nurses. The nurses received regular questionnaire surveys, as well as face-to-face and telephone interviews, designed to measure depression, anxiety, stress, and burnout, along with resilience and work environment. Half of the nurses were given psychological skills training to see if this was an effective intervention.

COVID-19 hit during this initial study and provided researchers with an early insight into how the pandemic added to the pressure on these newly qualified staff. The initial data indicated that the nurses were significantly affected by their experiences and that more than 25% had experienced symptoms related to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

In the study, one nurse noted: “There have been lots of situations with handling dying patients whose families are unable to come and visit and if they are allowed only one is allowed to visit. This has been very distressing.” Another said “the stressful experience was looking after patients who were acutely unwell with COVID. I found it stressful because there was little we could do for patients other than give them oxygen, so that added to the feeling of helplessness.”

This project will help us to understand their experience during the pandemic and allow us to make recommendations for psychological support services that can be implemented in East London and beyond

Judy Brook

Project Lead

Our seed funding will allow the project to be developed further, with researchers now looking at the long-lasting effects of COVID-19, the main causes of distress and PTSD symptoms and how they can be mitigated, including the relationship between the nurses’ resilience and PTSD symptoms. The funding follows our £3m grant for staff wellbeing at Barts Health NHS Trust and signals its commitment to supporting NHS staff across East London.

This follow-on study aims to provide practical recommendations to assist the NHS in better understanding the wellbeing and psychological support needs of early career nurses – not just at Barts Health NHS Trust, but across the country.

Newly qualified nurse Shataj Choudhury

Newly qualified nurse Shataj Choudhury has worked at Barts Health NHS Trust since January 2020. She says: “Working in an acute admissions ward meant my colleagues and I witnessed first-hand the sudden influx of covid patients coming in. Immediately I noticed the difference from caring for only a handful of unwell patients to bays full of sickly people. There was a fear of running out of PPE and also the guilt of not being able to execute our nursing role as best as we could – it is a lot harder to display compassionate care to someone you cannot get too close to.

“Witnessing the death of individuals is something a nurse grows accustomed to, both while as a student and also when you are qualified, however this was different as the death count increased suddenly, leaving us unprepared.

“There are many contributors to the feelings of being burnt out, and the covid pandemic intensified these. But to be a nurse is to already have an understanding that although it may not be an easy career, it is one that can be extremely rewarding and fulfilling.”

We hope the funding will lead to interventions which help nurses across the NHS improve their wellbeing and resilience, and continue their nursing careers, providing fantastic care through the pandemic and beyond.”

Fiona Miller Smith

Chief Executive, Barts Charity

Project lead Judy Brook, Associate Dean of Partnerships and Placements at the School of Health Science at City, University of London says: “We are really grateful to have the Barts Charity funding to be able to explore this area of research further. Newly qualified nurses are incredibly important to our nursing workforce but sadly many leave the profession after a short while. We want to be able to support them to stay and contribute to patient care in the NHS. This project will help us to understand their experience during the pandemic and allow us to make recommendations for psychological support services that can be implemented in East London and beyond.”

Our Chief Executive Fiona Miller Smith adds: “Recently, we have seen more than ever how imperative NHS staff are to our health service, so we’re really pleased to give seed funding to help understand the huge impact that COVID-19 has had on newly qualified East London nurses. We hope the funding will lead to interventions which help nurses across the NHS improve their wellbeing and resilience, and continue their nursing careers, providing fantastic care through the pandemic and beyond.”

Latest tweets

RT @sewsolidcrew: Well done to @Barts_Charity runners and all who take part - we love seeing the rainbows in action shots. Thank you for…

On Instagram

You might also like

2016, TAG Heuer Marking Heuer Aquaracer collection Reloaded, launched a new Aquaracer Aquaracer timepieces, to further enhance their natural overall richard mille replica performance and design. Scenario extended from the earlier 41-43 mm. Clay bezel re-designed etched sterling silver coloring stats, its date window zoomed present (re-introduced recently, to adhere to this season), preparing the actual sophisticated persona. The new situation is equipped Calibre A few Programmed activity, for your watch provides established reliability.

Royal Parks Half Marathon - Charity place registration

Thank you for registering for one of our charity places – and welcome to the Barts Charity team!

By submitting this form you are agreeing for us to contact you with race-day information, training and fundraising tips in relation to the Royal Parks Half Marathon 2021. This may include email, phone call or text message. You can of course update your preferences at any time, and we will fully respect your wishes (see below for more information).

Application information

*¹Please note we will do our best to match your wishes to the most relevant fund, but we cannot guarantee that sponsorship will be used to fund specific items

Note:
We may take photos on the day at the event, which could be used in Barts Charity communications and marketing activity, including but not limited to our website, social media, digital or printed materials, and press. If you are not happy for your image to be used in this way, please contact us on the details below. You can change how you hear from us at any time – contact hello@bartscharity.org.uk, or call 020 7618 1720. We collect and process your data to administer our Royal Parks Half Marathon 2021 places and to send you updates. For more information about how we use and protect the information you’re kindly sharing with us, see our privacy policy.

Hospital staff holding sign that says 'Thank you!'
Your're signed up!

Thanks – look in your inbox soon for updates on our work and how your support is making the difference.

Hospital staff holding sign that says 'Thank you!'
Thank you for registering your details, we will get back to you soon.

If you have any queries in the mean time please email: hello@bartscharity.org.uk 

Hospital staff holding sign that says 'Thank you!'
Thank you for subscribing!

We’ll send our latest news straight to your inbox each month, keeping you up-to-date with how your support is helping more people across our community and beyond receive extraordinary healthcare. In the meantime you may like to find out how you can get involved to help change lives, or to read our latest news.

Let us know at anytime if you have any questions or would like
more information on our work.

Thanks again for your support – it makes all the difference.

Thank you for your interest in becoming a Barts Charity Champion!

Please enter your details and a member of the team will be in touch soon.

Can we keep in touch?

Sign up here to receive our e-news for staff of the Barts Health Hospitals and Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry. Our fortnightly email will keep you updated on how staff are using our funding to make a difference, as well as ways that you can get involved with fundraising.

You can unsubscribe at any time.

To find out how we look after and use the information that you give us, take a look at our privacy policy.

Hospital staff holding sign that says 'Thank you!'
Thank you for your donation!
From innovative research to day-to-day comforts, you’re helping us to do more for the patients in the hospitals we support. We will email you confirmation of your donation within two working days.
Thank you again.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

Your donation

You’re making a single donation of

£

Where would you like your donation to go?

Is this donation in memory of anyone?

What motivated you to give/fundraise?

We like to share feedback with our NHS colleagues when they have inspired someone.

What did you do to fundraise?

Your details

You are generously donating £5.00

Personal information

How would you like to make your payment?

Payment details

You are generously donating £5.00

Payment card details

Sign up to our e-news

Our fortnightly email is full of the latest news about the healthcare innovation that we fund, and ways you might want to get involved. You’ll be able to unsubscribe at anytime.

To find out how we look after and use the information you give us, take a look at our privacy policy.

Main form heading

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.