MENTAL HEALTH IN THE AGE OF COVID-19

NEW YORK, (May 26, 2020) –  – Shelley Tanner, SanovaWorks CEO/President

Everything has changed; and it will never be the same. How we adapt and move on will determine many things about our future personal, and professional lives. SanovaWorks has been a 100% remote company for many years now. While many things about our focus and priorities have changed, the thing that hasn’t changed is our adaptability and our success with a flexible and remote work culture.

See our Diary of a Remote Company Series

Now that we are well into month three of social distancing and quarantine guidelines, the physical and mental impact of the worry, and anxiety, are being felt across our industry and many others. Companies are responding with increased internal support, and available resources for their employees. In the uncertain world we currently live in, mental health is a major concern for many people. With all the added worries, and concerns of financial, and physical health, you have a recipe for mental and physical suffering, in the form of stress. 

SanovaWorks and the Mental Health Support Plan

Managing stress in healthy ways is an ongoing conversation at SanovaWorks. We have implemented several initiatives that offer tools that are designed to reduce stress and give our Team time to recoup, so they are never feeling that work is too much for them to handle, with all that life is demanding, right now. 

Guided Meditation – SanovaWorks offers guided and recorded meditations for use by all teams at all times.

Mental Health Day – SanovaWorks closed the company for a day in May and will close for a day in June. It really meant so much to our Team to be able to turn off their notifications, not have to check email, and just relax and properly rejuvenate. 

COVID -19 Resources – SanovaWorks provided a resource document with a variety of links and information for adults and parents and we also made sure our team knew to where to look for their local resources.  

Flexible scheduling – We already have a very flexible culture for schedules. Our Team isn’t bound by a 9 – 5 routine, however we moved meeting schedules to ensure that all people who had a restricted schedule because of COVID-19 were able to work around their specific needs.

Giving back to the dermatology community

In response to COVID – 19 the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology (JDD) in partnership with SanovaWorks, Derm In-Review, Next Steps in Derm, ODAC and Skin of Color Update, hosted two webinars that are specific to the topic of mental health. 

COVID-19: The Invisible Impact on Dermatologists and Dermatology Practices

COVID-19: The Invisible Impact on Team Members  

The Invisible Impact on Dermatologists and Dermatology Practices was moderated by Richard G. Fried, MD, PhD (Board Certified Dermatologist & Clinical Psychologist, Clinical Director, Yardley Dermatology Associates); and included panelists Evan Rieder, MD (Board Certified Dermatologist & Psychiatrist, NYU Langone Health); Paul Jarrod Frank, MD (Chief Medical Officer & Founder, PFRANKMD), and Melissa Kanchanapoomi Levin, MD (Founder, Entière Dermatology).

As Dr. Fried explained COVID – 19 is having an invisible impact, “[the] invisible virus, visible virus, the invisible impact. It’s almost an ironic thing that COVID – 19 is so invisible yet stepping into [NYC] or other major cities throughout the states and beyond, it’s quite visible– invisible virus but stepping into the psyche and into the functional status of some many clinicians– it’s invisible, but very very visible.”

Dr. Evan Rieder, Board Certified Dermatologist & Psychiatrist, NYU Langone Health gave the following tips along with insight and encouragement to our audience.

If you are stressed out : 

  1. Dedicate time to worry – 20 minutes a day, and start a worry journal.
  2. Limit exposure to things that increase worry, example, limit news, certain people and social media and other triggers.
  3. Identify productive vs unproductive worry, i.e, what you can change and what you can’t change – paying a bill vs. the nature of the corona virus, what’s happening to economy who is wearing a mask. 
  4. Try not to compare yourself to others – hard to do, limit stressors like social media that foster comparison.
  5. Exercise
  6. Limit sugar and caffeine
  7. Slow down your breathing
  8. Practice mindfulness, and meditation
  9. Pilates or yoga
  10. Aroma therapy or a simple skin care experience of mindfulness

Other ways to free your mind of anxieties and unproductive worries are apps like Insight timer, and others that use guided imagery to lead the user to experience the beach, mountains or wherever you like. 

A unique and sobering perspective from our Derm community

Dr. Paul Jarrod Frank, Chief Medical Officer & Founder, PFRANKMD shared his tips for our listeners. Dr. Frank contracted and recovered from COVID – 19. His experience and unique perspective, and insight were a sobering addition to the panel. Dr. Frank’s advice to people listening was to always appreciate and focus on your teams. “It’s important to streamline your practice.” and build emotional slack and protection for yourself. Keep more money in the bank and have team leaders. 

What’s your silver lining?

Each experience of adversity is an opportunity to find a silver lining. Regarding COVID – 19, Dr. Frank stated that streamlining of patient care with no over booking, and no crowed waiting rooms is definitely a positive result.

Dr. Melissa Kanchanapoomi Levin, Founder, Entière Dermatology in New York City had to shut down her new practice due to COVID – 19. Dr. Levin shared her thoughts on the positive impact that COVID – 19 has had on the environment, sustainability, and the resultant ‘slowing down’ that has occurred across the world. 

My silver lining

My personal silver lining is an increased feeling of gratitude for all of Team Sanova. Our Team has risen to the occasion. While I know that our small company has felt the personal and professional impact of COVID – 19, I also witness the level of resiliency that each Team member exhibits. I’m proud to lead this team.

Shelley Tanner,

CEO/President SanovaWorks

Watch both webinars 

COVID-19: The Invisible Impact on Dermatologists and Dermatology Practices 

COVID-19: The Invisible Impact on Team Members  

RESOURCES

ALL JDD COVID -19 WEBINARS

RESOURCES FOR ADULTS/PARENTS