Original Article

Impact of COVID-19 Policies on Hospitalists’ Psychological Safety

Authors: Lily Rotman Devaraj, MD, Benjamin Geisler, MD, MPH, Cynthia Cooper, MD, Arabella Simpkin Begin, MD, MMSc


Objectives: The coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic brought about many changes in work environment and interpersonal interactions to prevent the spread of infection. Policies such as ubiquitous masking, virtual meetings, physician distancing, and decreased communal eating changed the inpatient work environment. This study aims to look at the impact of these changes on hospitalists’ psychological safety.

Methods: We surveyed hospitalists on how these changes affected their well-being and feelings of psychological safety.

Results: Masking, virtual meetings, and fewer opportunities to eat together decreased connection with colleagues. Virtual meetings and social distancing decreased some aspects of psychological safety.

Conclusions: This study highlights the importance of finding ways to foster connection and decrease burnout while continuing to prevent the spread of infection.

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