Mercyhurst University expands programs for nurses’ health

Deborah W. Morton

Mercyhurst University expands programs for nurses’ health

As the backbone of health care, nurses have traditionally faced challenges, but the pandemic has exacerbated a problem that many people outside the healthcare industry aren’t even aware of: nurse burnout.

Mounting patient volume combined with a dwindling supply of nurses has forced nurses to work more shifts and longer hours, further placing them at risk for experiencing burnout. According to a recent survey by Inspire Nurse Leaders, 53% cite challenges with inadequate staffing; 35% say it’s difficult to meet work and family demands; and 28% wish for more support programs for emotional needs and well-being.

Kay Edinger, B.S.N., R.N., would know.

“Certainly I’ve faced burnout during my career, but definitely at the height of the COVID crisis,” she said. “The responsibility of trying to keep everyone safe can be crushing.”

Edinger is a 23-year employee of Saint Vincent Hospital, part of the Allegheny Health Network, where she serves as nurse manager of Labor and Delivery and the Mother-Baby Unit.