As many of us in the workforce are being asked to serve public health by stepping back and staying home, one population is being tasked to step forward. Our frontline health workers are the first responders in the fight against the coronavirus. 

When the history of this pandemic is written, health care workers — from doctors and nurses to hospice and home care staff, physician assistants, and EMTs — will be remembered for meeting this moment with courage and compassion.

If you’re a healthcare worker or have a loved one who is, tell us what your life is like right now. Share your stories of the challenges first responders are facing, plus the little things they’re doing to boost their mental well-being, and we’ll share them with the world at #FirstRespondersFirst, a platform to help take care of health professionals while they take care of us. Email your stories (length is up to you!) and a photo to [email protected].

A few guidelines: 

  • Please include your first and last name (or initials), age, city/state/country, role and hospital affiliation (if you wish to include), like this: —Jane Smith, 37, Atlanta, GA, anesthesiologist, St. Joseph’s Hospital. 
  • Tell us some details about your work. Are you a doctor, nurse, medical assistant or respiratory therapist working in the COVID unit at a hospital? What has this time been like for you? What are some of the most stressful challenges you’ve experienced?
  • What are the unique ways you’ve had to adapt to support your patients in these circumstances?
  • What are some of the ways you’re staying resilient and protecting your own mental well-being? What habits, mindsets or activities are helping you navigate this time and stay positive?
  • Send us a photo as you’re getting ready for work or just finishing your shift to help people understand what it’s like to work on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic – horizontal images preferred.
  • If you’re a family member of a healthcare worker, we want to hear from you too. Tell us about the sacrifices you and your family have had to make and how you’re supporting the first responder/s you love. 
  • If you send a story, video or pictures, Thrive may publish your submission. Your submission may be edited before publication, and a Thrive editor may contact you to hear more about your story.

As part of the #FirstRespondersFirst initiative by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Thrive Global, and Creative Artists Agency, we’re also providing virtual coaching and tips rooted in the science of well-being to support and sustain our care providers. If you’re a first responder, click here to access the resources or forward the link to a friend or co-worker who could benefit from them.  

We can’t wait to hear from you!

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