Individual and organisational strategies to develop resilience in the nursing workforce
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence and practice    

Individual and organisational strategies to develop resilience in the nursing workforce

Ruff Joseph Cajanding Management charge nurse, Adult Critical Care Unit, St Bartholomew’s Hospital, Barts Health NHS Trust, London, England

Why you should read this article:
  • To refresh your knowledge of what is meant by resilience and how it is linked to physical and mental well-being

  • To enhance your awareness of the adverse effects that the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has had on nurses’ mental health, well-being and resilience

  • To consider strategies that nurses, nurse leaders and managers, and healthcare organisations could use to promote resilience in nurses

Nurses are likely to encounter a wide range of distressing, challenging and sometimes traumatic situations. However, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has created unprecedented levels of stress, risk, uncertainty and anxiety for nurses. Nurses have been working in highly challenging conditions, particularly on the front line of patient care, which has had adverse effects on their mental health and well-being. The challenges generated by the COVID-19 pandemic have called into question the notion of nursing being an innately resilient profession. Consequently, the pandemic has reinforced the need for individuals, teams and healthcare organisations to foster resilience in nurses. This article discusses the theoretical underpinnings of resilience, explains what resilience in nurses means, and describes the adverse effects of the pandemic on nurses’ mental health and resilience. The article also explores how nurses’ resilience can be developed and enhanced from an individual and organisational perspective.

Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2021.e11678

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software



Conflict of interest

None declared

Cajanding RJ (2021) Individual and organisational strategies to develop resilience in the nursing workforce. Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2021.e11678

Published online: 06 September 2021

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