Presented on November 17, 2021
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, frontline healthcare workers around the globe have provided exceptional patient care despite fears of infection, shortages of staff and supplies, and ongoing challenges of treating a novel pathogen. Additionally, the pandemic exposed deep gaps in processes and infrastructure that put healthcare team members’ physical, psychological and emotional safety at risk, driving cognitive overload and burnout to crisis levels. Systemic inequities were also amplified as COVID-19 disproportionately impacted people of color and Indigenous community members. A renewed and expanded definition of safety is needed to restore trust, recruit and retain individuals to healing professions, enable care to be provided with the greatest skill and humanity, and ensure the well-being of every person working in healthcare.