NOVEMBER 16, 2020
Millions of Americans are grieving alone in their homes, unable to lean on the people and programs they would normally rely on after a death. Anger, guilt and sadness are compounded by the pain of not being with loved ones at the end. Worse still is that COVID-19 forces people to grieve alone, without the funerals, support groups, and visits from neighbors they would normally rely on.
Grief and loss disproportionately impact vulnerable populations, with those same populations less likely to receive bereavement care. We know that grief often leads to poor physical health outcomes including anxiety, depression, suicidal ideation and substance abuse, yet not enough is being done. Hospices, non-profit grief organizations, therapists, support group providers, and others are working hard to address the escalating need for grief support, but with COVID-19 deaths continuing to grow, as well as increasing death rates from nearly all other causes as compared to 2019, we are faced with a growing crisis that requires new and creative solutions.
- Dale Reisner, MD, Medical Director (OB/GYN Quality & Safety) at Swedish Health Services
- Emma Payne, Founder and CEO, Grief Coach