Nurse Wellness Committee (NWC) started in 2019 to: cultivate a culture of wellness; collaborate with the Clinical Center Nursing Department (CCND) to identify health and wellness needs to explore self-care; provide a forum for individual wellness initiatives to be developed; and identify and promote existing wellness opportunities to the CCND staff. We partnered with the various ORS programs, i.e. NIH Wellness, Fitness, Child and Family programs, OMS, EAP, and representatives from Nutrition, Pain and Palliative care, and the Chaplain's office to promote these services to CCND staff. We have had presentations by fitness, nutrition, EAP and highlight a health observance monthly and suggest evidenced based methods to improve health or prevent illness based on that topic, such as diabetes, vision, vaccinations, and the nervous system.
The NWC meets monthly on the first Thursday of every month from 8:30-10AM and the Chair for 2021 is Yve Viands, RN, BSN and can be reached at Yvette.email@example.com. Martina Lavrisha, MSN, MPH, RN-BC is the outgoing chair and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. The NWC has 31 voting ambassadors and an additional 25 staff who have voiced interest in being involved with the committee from the various institutes, nutrition, spiritual care, OMS, palliative care, R & W, Wellness, and EAP. We also share resource information with interdisciplinary and support staff we work with.
Caregiving is the essence of nursing and to promote balance during this challenging time, the NWC encourages nurses/caregivers to practice what they preach in their daily schedule. Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables at every meal. Get those extra steps by parking farther away or taking the stairs if physically able. Take deep breaths when washing your hands to ground oneself. Hydrate often. Count to 10 if finding yourself frustrated or annoyed, get off the unit or leave the room for 10 minutes to get perspective. Get adequate sleep (turn off electronics, cooler temperatures, progressive relaxation exercises, listen to relaxing music). Be kind to yourself – cut yourself some slack. Find the positive in what you do or can do and put in a gratitude jar. Highlight what you did each week and pat yourself on the back for a job well done!
There is a plethora of resources available campus wide for all NIH staff that can help with the strain of work and family life. Explore the ORS website: https://ors.od.nih.gov and familiarize yourself with the different services and resources under amenities related to childcare, recipes, clubs, elder care, fitness, wellness, lactation, 12 step programs, locations of showers and lockers, etc. The Wellness Toolkits provide the links to emotional, physical, financial, and social well-being resources: