In 22 years as a physician assistant, Chanel Copeland has seen how stressful the role of caregiver can be. Now part of the team at the Duke Orthopaedics Heritage Clinic in Wake Forest, Copeland has previously served in urgent care and emergency medicine situations.
She understands how, when stakes get high for patients, the mental toll it takes on caregivers can get overlooked.“Often when practicing medicine, there’s a stigma with saying you’re having a bad day because you have to be perfect every day, all the time,” Copeland said.
In the summer of 2022, Copeland learned a new way to support her well-being and her colleagues by participating in a “Stress First-Aid” training program offered by a team from the Duke University School of Nursing and School of Medicine. The program helped her use the bonds between team members to prevent stress from jeopardizing caregivers’ mental wellbeing.

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