COVID-19 & Stress
ACEs Aware supports health care providers, their teams, and all those on the front lines of administering care and interventions as California addresses stress and anxiety related to COVID-19.
To lessen anxiety during this time of uncertainty, providers and patients alike can benefit from buffering care and protective factors to help prevent a toxic stress response.
This page lists stress management resources for providers related to COVID-19 as well as general resources providers can share with patients to increase buffering and protective factors to reduce the impact of toxic stress.
- Read A Message to California Health Care Providers About COVID-19 and Toxic Stress by Dr. Nadine Burke-Harris and Dr. Karen Mark
- See the DHCS guidance on mitigating negative health outcomes due to COVID-19.
- Read the California Surgeon General Stress Playbooks During COVID-19.
- Watch the ACEs Aware webinar Trauma-Informed Practices to Address Stress Related to COVID-19.
COVID-19 Stress Management Resources
This section lists stress management resources for providers related to COVID-19. These resources include mental health and psychosocial support considerations, workforce and organization resilience strategies, and resources providers can share with their patients. Download the full ACEs Aware Stress Management Resource List (3/25/20).
For the latest information in California, visit COVID19.ca.gov. For the latest clinical information on COVID-19 for health care providers, contact your local Department of Public Health. For additional information, including interim guidance and resources on caring for patients with COVID-19, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 Information for Healthcare Professionals webpage.
Summary of key mental health and psychosocial support considerations for COVID-19. Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Reference group for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings.
Includes specific interventions for special populations:
- Helping Older Adults Cope with Stress During the COVID-19 Outbreak
- Supporting the Needs of People with Disabilities During a COVID-19 Outbreak
- Messages and Activities for Helping Children Deal with Stress During the COVID-19 Outbreak
- Activities for Adults in Isolation/Quarantine
- Supporting People Working in the COVID-19 Response
Uniformed Services University. Includes the following resources:
- Sustaining the Well-Being of Healthcare Personnel during Coronavirus and other Infectious Disease Outbreaks: List of strategies for healthcare professionals to employ in support of self- and team-care. Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Uniformed Services University.
- Psychosocial Effects of Quarantine or Isolation During the Coronavirus Outbreak: What Healthcare Providers Need to Know: The psychological effects of quarantine or isolation, as well as strategies for how healthcare providers can care for their patients’ and their own mental well-being during periods of quarantine.
COVID-19 Considerations for a Trauma Informed Response for Work Settings (Organizations/Schools/Clinics)
Trauma-informed considerations for work settings where services are provided, in light of COVID-19. Trauma Informed Oregon, Portland State University, Oregon Health Authority.
How organizational leaders can use trauma-informed care approaches to support their workforce in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. Karen Johnson, Trauma-Informed Lens Consulting.
This Stress-Busting Playbook can help patients understand what to look out for and what they can do to protect their family’s health.
This simple guide from the California Surgeon General provides tips and suggestions on things patients can do every day, at home, to help support their mental and physical health.
One-page tip sheet for parents on how to help children cope with stress during the outbreak. Can be posted in exam rooms. World Health Organization.
A four-page parent resource sheet developed by school psychologists and nurses for talking with children about COVID-19. Available in English and Spanish. National Association of School Psychologists and National Association of School Nurses.
A two-page parent resource on approaches to manage homebound periods for children and families. Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress. Uniformed Services University.
Information and extensive on-line resources for individuals experiencing anxiety related to COVID-19, as well as specific information for individuals living with a mental illness. National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).
Compilation of recommendations and resources for survivors of domestic and sexual violence, as well as programs that support survivors. Futures without Violence.
Provides hotlines and resources related to behavioral health, child welfare, and intimate partner violence. From covid19.ca.gov.
- National Suicide Prevention Hotline (24/7) – Call 800-273-TALK (8255); Online chat support
- California Suicide & Crisis Hotlines: phone numbers and links to all the suicide and crisis hotlines by county in California
- California Peer-Run Warm Line (24/7) – Call 855-845-7415 for non-emergency support
- National Domestic Violence Hotline (24/7) – Call 800-799-SAFE (7233)
- Disaster Distress Helpline (24/7) – Call 1-800-985-5990 (TTY 800-846-8517) or text TalkWithUs to 66746 for support
- National Alliance on Mental Illness Crisis Text Line (24/7) – Text NAMI to 741-741
- National Sexual Assault Hotline (24/7) – Call 800-656-HOPE (4673); Online Hotline
- National Parent Helpline (Monday through Friday 10:00 am – 7:00 pm PDT) – Call 1-855-2736 for emotional support and advocacy for parents
General Resources Providers Can Share with Patients on Buffering Toxic Stress
This section lists resources providers can share with patients to increase buffering and protective factors for adults and families/children to reduce the impact of stress related to COVID-19. These factors include supportive relationships; high-quality sufficient sleep; physical activity; balanced nutrition; and mindfulness and meditation.
An ACEs Aware-developed tool for patients to use in developing a self-care plan to enhance well-being and decrease stress — for adults.
Easy-to-use app for practicing mindfulness meditation with the guidance of the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center.
Patient handout for adults on how to lower toxic stress. Carpinteria Children’s Project.
An ACEs Aware-developed tool for patients to use in developing a self-care plan to enhance well-being and decrease stress — for children and families.
Patient handout for families about maintaining supportive relationships. Center for Youth Wellness and ZERO TO THREE.
Patient handout about using mindfulness as a tool to reduce toxic stress. Center for Youth Wellness and ZERO TO THREE.
Patient handout on children’s sleeping habits. Center for Youth Wellness and ZERO to THREE.