Help Texts launches text-based support for healthcare workers

The subscription-based service sends semi-customized supportive texts based on what users input about their experiences when signing up and without initiation.

A confluence of mental health and grief expert contributors, including therapists, nurses, doctors, authors, researchers and end-of-life professionals, have launched a text-based tool that they say can help address clinician burnout and fatigue.

Reducing healthcare worker burnout 

The company's FAQ says the service, developed by a worldwide team of care experts, is designed to complement other mental health services, like counseling or therapy.

In addition to receiving support texts, healthcare workers can also choose to invite two supporters, and Help Text will send "gentle reminders" about how they can provide support -- like running errands, making meals or doing tasks at home. 

Help Text contributor Janae Sharp, founder of the nonprofit Sharp Index dedicated to reducing physician suicide and bournout, says that there is power in the interplay of social media, media and marketing to destigmatize mental health concerns.  

"The problem of physician suicide and the problem of physician burnout, it's complicated," so Sharp Index works with many partners to build mental health support solutions with physicians, she told Healthcare IT News

Sharp, who has a background in healthcare IT, spoke candidly about her personal loss of a physician spouse to suicide and finding few support resources. She developed Sharp Index to be a resource to support the healthcare industry's mental health challenges.

Addressing healthcare worker mental health

Text-based communications are regarded as enhancing patient experiences, and have become routine for countless providers and patients since it became clear that individuals want texts and that healthcare organizations could improve outcomes.

While Clinical texting has a downside in that it can create operational challenges and trigger alert fatigue, burnout is at an all-time high, and providers are using an array of digital health tools to improve employee wellness.