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Learning from adversity: Occupational therapy staff experiences of coping during Covid-19

Ingham, Laura, Jackson, Esther and Purcell, Catherine ORCID: 2022. Learning from adversity: Occupational therapy staff experiences of coping during Covid-19. British Journal of Occupational Therapy 85 (8) , pp. 577-584. 10.1177/03080226211064490

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Introduction The Occupational Therapy profession is adaptable and flexible (Thorner (1991) and these characteristics have the potential to act as protective factors during the COVID-19 pandemic. Understanding the mechanisms that support coping during adversity can help promote future wellbeing. The aim of this study was to explore how Occupational Therapy staff felt and coped during the first peak of the pandemic. Method A questionnaire was developed to explore the experiences of Occupational Therapy staff during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. The questions explored feelings, mechanisms of support and challenges to both practice and wellbeing. A total of 75 staff responded across one NHS Health Board and reflections were analysed using inductive content analysis. Findings Staff reflected on how their ability to adapt and remain flexible were protective factors. This combined with supportive family members, friends and colleagues led respondents to reflect on how well they coped. Barriers to coping included organisational challenges, personal challenges and professional challenges. Conclusion The importance of consistent communication, the need for staff to remain connected to their profession and the importance of engaging in meaningful occupations were highlighted as key to maintaining wellbeing during adversity.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Healthcare Sciences
Publisher: SAGE Publications
ISSN: 0308-0226
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 21 March 2022
Date of Acceptance: 9 November 2021
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2023 20:16

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