Resilience Team Responds to Employees' Answers from Initial COVID-19 Touch Point Survey

September 01, 2020
Gratitude Lane PG leaders

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, NHRMC has been committed to supporting the health and well-being of all teammates and their families – fostering a culture of resilience. As we adjust to the “next normal,” NHRMC continues to be committed to providing benefits and resources so that teammates are fully supported while providing critical, quality healthcare to our community.

To help understand how our employees were feeling and hear about their needs, the Resilience Governance Council encouraged all NHRMC employees to tell us about their concerns and challenges through the Employee Touch Point Survey from April 20 to June 15.

As the pandemic continues and creates a different degree of COVID Fatigue, we will again ask you to participate in the NHRMC Employee Touch Point Survey so we can take the pulse of our staff and provide resources wherever possible. As parents of school age children know all too well, the state and local decision to open the school year with virtual learning only is presenting teammates and leaders with new and complex challenges for navigating staffing and schedules – with no two teammates experiencing the same situation. As such, we’ve added a couple of questions to Round 2 of the survey, specifically about childcare and schooling.  

Here’s what you told us in the first NHRMC Employee Touch Point Survey regarding the COVID-19 pandemic crisis:  

  • 972 respondents,
  • 59.05% clinical and 40.95% non-clinical,
  • 23.59% working from home,
  • 10.17% were working in a different department or position,
  • 47.44% reported to be very stressed or stressed, while 52.56% reported to be somewhat or not stressed,
  • 40.37% responded that they were extremely or very worried about the impact the Coronavirus may have on them personally, while 59.63% said they were somewhat, not so worried, or not at all worried,
  • 99.59% said they were taking the correct precautions related to their job with equal response regarding precautions outside of work,
  • 53.38% stated they were extremely or very worried about the impact of the virus on NHRMC and 46.62% were somewhat, not so worried, or not at all worried,
  • 32.18% answered it was very easy or easy to perform their job during this pandemic, 43.85% replied that it neither easy nor difficult and 23.97% shared that it was difficult or very difficult,
  • 87.63% confirmed that they were receiving relevant communications from their leaders and organization regarding the Covid-19 crisis, and
  • 87.06% answered they were confident to very confident that they had the right support network outside of work to help them through this period.
  • Responses to the open-ended questions regarding employees’ biggest challenges and greatest concerns were grouped in the following buckets: anxiety and fatigue, change, communication, exposure and fear of infection, layoffs, PPE, stress, isolation and social distancing, finances and staffing.

Your survey responses were used to develop emergency response tactics and employee communication in five focus areas: mental, physical, social, spiritual and financial. The resiliency webpage is an excellent place to find internal and external resources. Some of these tactics include:

  • New Health and Fitness options - Virtual workouts and outdoor classes, healthy cooking demos and classes, the Summer Fun Series including pickleball, tennis, paddle boarding, and more, and programs like ZOOMFitKids, Kid Cooking Club, R2  and Refresh Your Resolve. 
  • Gratitude Lane – One of the most impactful tactics for employee recipients and volunteers. NHRMC partnered with the Greater Wilmington Business Council (GWBC) to provide thanks and recognition to our Healthcare Heroes. Through individual and corporate community donations, the GWBC purchased meals from a variety of local food trucks each weekday night over a 5-week period. As employees drove through Gratitude Lane (a converted parking lot at the fitness center) they made 7 stops to receive things like energy drinks, snacks, Bundt cakes, kale shots, flowers, and smoothies from our staff and community volunteers. Cars (often filled with the entire family) were greeted by groups of employee volunteers cheering them on and giving thanks. Leaders concluded the line with hand-written notes from children and elders in the community, as well as a special thank you card from senior leadership.
  • Senior Hall – we recognized the grief in the loss of many traditions that surround senior graduations for parents and their high school or college graduates. Senior Hall provided an opportunity to showcase a parent’s pride for their loved ones and refresh an environment of celebration for their accomplishments. Located on the concourse of the main 17th Street Campus, 143 graduates’ pictures and points of personal reflection lined the walls.  
  • Smile Behind the Badge – The RGC approved and the NHRMC Foundation funded this important project.  We believe having smiling pictures of staff members will help comfort patients and allow them to connect better with their healthcare team during this time of constant mask/PPE use. RN’s, NA’s, HUC’s and Respiratory Therapists at three hospital locations were asked to take their own horizontal picture and upload their information and picture to a portal - then wear their Smiling badge buddy when working.
  • The KIND Line - the NHRMC Spiritual Care team is available to all NHRMC employees to listen to concerns and plan coping steps through a dedicated 24-hour line at (910) 667-KIND or (910) 667-5463.
  • Expanded Telemedicine for Psychiatry – virtual visits are encouraged to give covered members easy access through a mobile device, tablet or computer for medical plan members using the United Healthcare portal. The educational campaign was implemented in response to employee requests for access to licensed Psychiatrists in addition to UHC and EAP counselors.
  • Booster Shot Coaching (pilots) - the program coached participants through dealing with a major crisis while acting ethically, maintaining personal integrity and doing the right thing for patients AND stakeholders through a series of sessions (by Zoom) by JCG Consulting Group. Pilot groups included EMS, ELT and OLT, and a group of interested Physicians.


Watch for the new survey to be released on Capsules Live later this week. We plan to have the survey open for responses for two weeks so we can begin to develop strategies and identify internal and external resources to addressing your reported concerns quickly.