Journal of Emergencies, Trauma, and Shock
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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 116-123

Face to face with coronavirus disease 19: Maintaining motivation, psychological safety, and wellness

Department of Emergency Medicine, Singapore General Hospital; Adjunct Professor, Duke NUS Graduate Medical School; Adjunct Professor, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore; Singhealth Duke NUS Institute of Medical Simulation, Singapore; Founding and Board Member, World Academic Council in Emergency Medicine

Correspondence Address:
Fatimah Lateef
Department of Emergency Medicine, Singapore General Hospital

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JETS.JETS_27_20

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Emerging infectious diseases have the potential to spread across borders extremely quickly. This was seen during the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) outbreak and now, coronavirus disease (COVID 19) (novel coronavirus) pandemic. For outbreaks and pandemics, there will be behavioral, affective, and cognitive changes and adaptation seen. This may be prominent in frontline workers and healthcare workers (HCWs), who work in high-risk areas, as well as people in general. What represents the psychology and mindset of people during a pandemic? What is needed to allay anxieties and instill calm? What will be needed to keep the motivation levels of people and HCW high so that they continue to function optimally? Which motivation theory can be used to explain this and how do employers and management utilize this in their approach/strategies in planning for an outbreak? Finally, the impact of culture, in the various contexts, cannot be overlooked in crisis and pandemic management. The author is a senior emergency physician in Singapore, who has been through SARS and now the COVID pandemic. She has been instrumental in sharing some of the changes and practices implemented in Singapore, since SARS 17 years ago, until now. Besides being a full-time practicing emergency physician, the author is also an elected Member of the Singapore Parliament for the last 14 years. She shares her views on an aspect often overlooked during a pandemic: psychological wellness and motivations of people, including for HCW at the frontline.

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