Mental Health Concerns for Essential Employees: Understanding Your Disability Options

There is no doubt the coronavirus pandemic has placed a tremendous strain on the mental health of essential workers – especially healthcare workers. One need not look any further than the recent suicides of two healthcare workers (an emergency physician and an emergency medical technician) on the frontlines of the crisis in New York City to get an idea of the mental and emotional toll the pandemic has taken on those who are still reporting to work.

While essential workers such as frontline medical professionals and healthcare workers don’t have to worry about being furloughed, terminated, or laid off during this crisis, they’re faced with unique stressors and challenges that impact their personal and professional lives, including their mental well-being.

In addition to the additional burden of worrying about prolonged exposure to the virus and what that means for them and their families, many medical professionals are facing COVID-19 disability claim denials.

An Increased Risk for Chronic, Long-Term Health Conditions

Stress and burnout were already significant problems in the medical profession even prior to the advent of COVID-19. A nationwide survey of 6880 physicians in the U.S. whose purpose was to evaluate stress in physicians revealed that 54.4% of participants reported at least one symptom of burnout compared to 45.5% in 2011. Moreover, satisfaction with work–life balance in physicians had declined between 2011 (48.5%) and 2014 (40.9%). 

The survey revealed that physicians who worked in frontline specialties such as emergency medicine, general internal medicine, neurology, and family medicine were at highest risk for chronic stress. When compared with other professions, physicians had nearly twice the risk of burnout and work-life dissatisfaction.

Psychologically, physician burnout could lead to higher amounts of stress, disruptive behavior, mood disorders, and depression. To make matters worse, most physicians don’t acknowledge their symptoms or admit that they can be affected by burnout and refuse to seek help.

Coronavirus-related PTSD, anxiety, depression, addiction and other mental illnesses can render a healthcare worker unable to perform the material and substantial duties of their job. If you’re a physician or other medical professional who is unable to work as a result of the mental and emotional toll of COVID-19, contact a Philadelphia disability insurance attorney at our office to understand your disability options.

Contact a Philadelphia Disability Insurance Attorney

We’re here for you during this difficult time. Seltzer & Associates specializes in helping physicians, dentists, psychologists, nurse anesthetists, chiropractors, medical professionals, executives, lawyers, accountants, and other professionals across the country who may be considered essential employees during the coronavirus outbreak with their short-term and long-term disability insurance claims.

Our goal is to ensure you understand the disability options available to you during this difficult time. We encourage you to reach out to our nationwide legal team for a free evaluation of your COVID-19 disability insurance claim.

If you have questions about your COVID-19 disability insurance claim, contact a Seltzer & Associates Philadelphia disability insurance attorney to get started with a free claim evaluation. Our law firm works with clients throughout the country.