Videoconference-based Creativity Workshops for mental health staff during the COVID-19 pandemic

Simon Riches*, Meirion Yusuf-George, Natalie Steer, Carolina Fialho, Ruxandra Vasile, Sarah Nicholson, Saira Waheed, Helen Fisher, Shuo Zhang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Background: COVID-19 presented significant challenges to psychiatric staff, while social distancing and remote working necessitated digital communications. NHS England prioritised staff wellbeing. Arts-based creativity interventions appear to improve psychological wellbeing, so this study evaluated online Creativity Workshops as a staff support response for COVID-19-related stress. Methods: Participants were staff from a South London NHS psychiatric hospital. Group Creativity Workshops were facilitated via Microsoft Teams. Acceptability data on pre- and post-workshop mood and attitudes were self-reported by participants. Feasibility data were gathered from adherence to number of workshop components delivered. Results: Eight workshops were delivered in May-September 2020 (N=55) with high adherence to components. Participants reported significantly increased positive mood and attitudes towards themselves and others; and decreased stress and anxiety. Conclusions: Online Creativity Workshops appear feasible and acceptable in reducing stress in psychiatric staff. Integrating a programme of Creativity Workshops within healthcare staff support may benefit staff wellbeing.
Original languageEnglish
JournalArts & Health: An International Journal for Research, Policy and Practice
Early online date13 Mar 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 13 Mar 2023


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