Surveying Changes in EPI During the COVID-19 Pandemic
EPION’s Research Working Group surveyed standards of care and changes in practice during the pandemic. Dr. Chris Bowie, the Chair of the Research Working Group, shared the following findings at the EPION General Network Meeting in spring 2020:
Over 60 EPI clinicians responded to the survey.
When asked the degree to which clinicians believed they were able to maintain their fidelity to the different EPI program standards, most areas had not changed significantly. Only psychosocial support and relapse prevention were slightly worse.
Clinicians said that they experienced more work exhaustion and less professional fulfillment in the first few months of COVID, but the size of this effect was fairly small.
Patient symptoms that worsened in the first few months of COVID included anxiety, low mood, cognitive skills, and social withdrawal.
One limitation to the first survey is that it didn’t include questions about patient sleep quality or patterns, which has been a concern voiced by survey respondents in the narrative/text box responses. The survey team is including it in future surveys and also exploring how CBT-Insomnia can be applied in the network.
A report with more detailed round 1 findings will be shared with the network soon.
Continuation of the survey will help track changes in patient and clinician experiences as the pandemic continues: to see if trends reverse or worsen, or if new trends emerge.