Pilot Program "Heal The Healers Now" Aims To Quell Medical Worker Stress

Dr. Bradley Collins meditates in one of the new meditation rooms at Miriam Hospital.Photo: Photo Courtesy of WBZ's Suzanne Sausville

PROVIDENCE, R.I (WBZ NewsRadio) — With hospitals across the country losing staff due to the stresses of COVID-19, some New England hospitals have implemented a pilot program called "Heal the Healers Now," teaching doctors, nurses, and other medical staff how to do Transcendental Meditation (TM) to handle the pressures from their work.

Dr. Bradley Collins of Miriam Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island said that doctors and nurses were already burnt out by the pandemic when the Delta variant of COVID-19 hit and made matters even worse. He said that the feeling was similar to post-traumatic stress disorder.

But then, like a "God-send," Collins told WBZ's Suzanne Sausville that TM helped him get back on his feet. Collins was so impressed by the program that he went to the hospital's president with a proposal. "I said, 'maybe we can do a project to try to retain some of these nurses by offering TM as a burnout tool instead of having them leave.'"

According to research cited on TM's website, hundreds of studies have been conducted at more than 200 independent universities and research institutions on the TM Technique.

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Miriam Hospital received grants to train staff in TM, including newly hired nurses, and installed dedicated meditation rooms in the building. The rooms featured comfy chairs and Himalayan salt lamps, for staff to use to meditate during their shifts. Collins said that he would like to see time for meditation built into employee breaks.

WBZ's Suzanne Sausville (@wbzSausville) reports.

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