Research Output
Avoiding Burnout of Care Home Workforce
  This small study focused on the resources available and used to support the wellbeing and mental health of frontline care workers (FCW) in care homes for older people. It had two aims; (1) to identify and collate key resources of relevance to FCWs and (2) to share these and other activities, initiatives and learning from care homes’ experiences of supporting staff wellbeing during the pandemic.


• A wealth of wellbeing resources are available online and more were made available following the COVID-19 outbreak. However, for FCWs, identifying relevant, high quality resources can be difficult and time consuming. Participants reported that online resources were not the main source of support that they used during the pandemic
• Online wellbeing resources need to be tailored and targeted to FCWs in care homes to bridge the identified delivery gaps. There is a recognised requirement to better understand how best to improve uptake and embed resources within care homes.
• Care homes, families, residents and staff benefited greatly from morale boosting creative activities and from staff groups and individuals ‘going the extra mile’. Homes relied on this team camaraderie during the pandemic. However this is not sustainable in the long term and internal and external resources for wellbeing must be replenished so staff are able to continue to provide effective and compassionate care to residents whilst also looking after their own health and wellbeing
• Benefits of supportive communication within the home for staff wellbeing were identified. They can take many formats and be either formal (for example end of shift huddles/checklists and supervision) or informal (for example peer support and an open door culture).
• The culture, leadership and supervision practice of individual care homes is key to staff wellbeing. Further resources, the development of quality improvement projects and training initiatives for practice-based preventative psychological wellbeing must be embedded within homes.
• Care home managers’ wellbeing and practice development is aided by sharing their learning and experiences with peers. Support Groups and networks should be established, facilitated and resourced.

  • Type:

    Research Report

  • Date:

    01 March 2021

  • Publication Status:


  • Funders:

    Chief Scientists Office


Johnston, L., & Malcolm, C. (2021). Avoiding Burnout of Care Home Workforce. Edinburgh: CSO



Care homes

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