“When the public supports NHS staff it really makes a difference.”


Emma Lishman has worked at North Bristol NHS Trust for 12 years. In 2019, she joined the Staff Wellbeing Psychology Team in 2019. In an extremely challenging year, your donations have been essential in supporting the wellbeing of teams across the hospitals. Here, Emma tells us about the work that the Staff Wellbeing Psychology Team have been doing in the last year.

My name is Emma and I’m a clinical psychologist working in the Staff Wellbeing Psychology Team. I’m based at Southmead Hospital, and we work with staff across North Bristol NHS Trust.

An average day is busy, but always full of meeting new, interesting and great people. I spend time working with staff who have been struggling on a 1:1 basis; in groups offering reflecting sessions or workshops to teams who have had challenging times.

I’m privileged to hear such personal and moving stories. I’m always amazed at the resilience, strength and humour our staff find even in the most difficult and distressing circumstances.

Reacting to the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic

Without the charity donors, our service and my role would not exist, so we are so thankful for the support. We were lucky that the Staff Wellbeing Psychology Team had already formed before Covid-19. We were able to move quickly to try and find ways to support staff during such an unpredictable and turbulent time.

Throughout the pandemic we have piloted a number of preventative projects which have helped our staff.

Start Well, End Well is a project developed by Senior Medics, Quality Improvement, and ourselves. It is a simple three-step approach:

Step 1: team check-in at the start of the working day (shift). This ensures that staff ‘arrive well’, have clear objectives, and is a space in which everyone can raise concerns.

Step 2: an optional ‘pit stop’ debrief if something difficult has happened during the day. Staff can come together to share their experiences.

Step 3: team check-out at the end of the day (shift). This ensures everyone is okay, work is shared, concerns can be raised, and gratitude is shown.

We’ve also rolled out an initiative called Me and My Team, which aims to build skills and confidence in managers to support staff in a compassionate way. Our ACT course (acceptance and commitment therapy), which is for all staff, has continued virtually throughout the past year.

Staff wellbeing is hugely important at the Trust

We know that good staff support means that people will enjoy their role more, are more likely to stay in the NHS, and are better able to care for patients. It’s fantastic that with the support from charity donors, we’re able to provide more wellbeing care to our incredible staff.

When the public supports NHS staff it really makes a difference, so thank you.

You can continue to support the wellbeing of our staff by donating today. Thank you.

Thank you for your support – it makes a huge difference to our patients, their families and our staff.

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