COVID-19 Update (April 2): On wellness

April 2, 2020 | Author: Dr. Susan Moffatt-Bruce

Dear Fellows,

We appreciate that all of you are working hard and these are very difficult times. Amidst a crisis like this, you will be faced with times of uncertainty. To that end, I hope that you remember to consider your own health and capacity to safely do your job, as well as protect your children, friends, parents, colleagues, patients and so many others around you.

Your wellness matters to us.

Recent trends are showing, unsurprisingly, that many health care workers responding to COVID-19 are feeling distress, depression and facing insomnia. I have spent the last few days thinking about how we can help support your mental wellness — amidst a very stressful time and in spite of this ongoing uncertainty.

Some pearls of wisdom I have seen others speak to are as follows:

  • Identify what you can and cannot control, and focus on the former.
  • Remember why you chose medicine and what you value about your job.
  • Establish and maintain meaningful connections.
  • Practice calming techniques.
  • Invest in caring for yourself.
  • Remember that we are all working through this together.

Wellness requires deliberate action and focus (mind over matter, so to speak). We are all busy, but a few minutes of reflection or a short conversation with a friend to regroup is almost always worth your time. I encourage you to read Dr. Gautam’s full bulletin of tips [PDF].

Supporting you with new and updated resources

I was also reminded this week that a great deal of anxiety stems from a lack of information and communication. As a reminder, we have several webpages that are regularly updated with useful and credible resources. We have also newly posted a webpage listing some wellness resources.

Do you have any wellness tips or links to add? We would love to share them so that we can all benefit. Please email

In my next message, I plan to share a couple of stories: one about a Fellow who is helping protect the homeless from a COVID-19 outbreak and another of a Fellow who, with colleagues, has helped fast-track some simulation training related to this virus. We have tremendous strength in our Fellows.

Until my next update, please take care.



Susan D. Moffatt-Bruce, MD, PhD, MBA, FACS, FRCSC
Chief Executive Officer