AdventHealth orchestra brings healing to Central Florida health care providers

National Nurse’s Week runs May 6-12

VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. – Monday kicks off National Nurse’s Week and not only does AdventHealth want to celebrate their nurses, but they also want to highlight how some are addressing nursing burnout.

While AdventHealth offers several programs to help nurses and doctors with burnout, dozens of health care providers have come together to create the AdventHealth orchestra.

“Everything just sort of relaxes and I just get into the moment and play music together,” said AdventHealth nurse, Ian Barnett.

Barnett is a nurse at AdventHealth New Symrna Beach, but he’s also principal bassoon in the health care system’s orchestra.

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“I didn’t apply at first because I thought, I’m here in New Smyrna, they’re based out of Orlando, they wouldn’t pick anybody,” Barnett said. “So my manager said, ‘Apply, do it. You’ll never know.’ So, I applied. And who knew? I’m principal bassoon.”

Barnett worked on the hospital’s COVID unit during the COVID-19 pandemic and said being a member of the orchestra helps him deal with stress and burnout.

“Nobody understands what we’re going through,” Barnett said. “I mean, you go home, and you can’t really vent to family. So, to have something like this where other people that have been through it can get together, it’s just important. It’s a good, good way to heal ourselves.”

In a 2022 study, the American Nurses Foundation found that 69% of nurses under the age of 25 experienced burnout. AdventHealth Chief Nursing Officer for the Central Florida South region, Cathy Stankiewicz said that number isn’t shocking.

“We did have a lot of burnout prior to COVID, and it doesn’t surprise me that it increased during COVID,” Stankiewicz said. “And even now, today, burnout continues to be, as you mentioned, a significant issue that we are committed at AdventHealth to address.”

AdventHealth offers several programs to help their nursing staff including the RISE program, which aims at helping providers improve their mental health through counseling or group activities.

“Just different interventions that are delivered by a licensed mental health counselor that allows for our nurses to recognize, accept the fact that there is burnout, that burnout is okay and have compassion for themselves as they continue to talk and work to improve their mental health,” Stankiewicz said.

The AdventHealth orchestra also performs publicly. Their most recent performances include Christmas concerts at Disney Springs and the Orlando Rescue Mission. The groups first performance was in 2021 at the Doctor Phillip’s Performing Arts Center. It was a requiem for all of the patients, providers and people around the world who died during the pandemic.

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Emily joined WKMG-TV in November 2022.