Within the constant ebbs and flows of life, we are seeing caregivers and providers experiencing states of emotional, mental, and physical exhaustion caused by prolonged or repeated stress. This is defined as burnout. Burnout is not simply work overload; it is a result of long hours, taking on too many tasks, and feeling a loss of control.

Know these experiences are valid, and if you are experiencing burnout as a caregiver or as a provider, it’s important to care for yourself. Here at VitalCare, we value the selfcare of our providers so we can provide the best care to our clients, and many client relationships include those of caregivers as well: such as parents, primary guardians, or family members and friends.

Burnout can lead to feelings of Depression, cynicism, lethargy, and exhaustion. A large study documented on healthline.com article states, “caregivers who felt that they were under a lot of strain had poorer health outcomes compared to caregivers who felt little or no strain.” A study published regarding burnout for providers states, “National studies suggest that over 50% of providers experience symptoms related to burnout, which is significantly higher than the general population.”

Signs of burnout can vary per individual, but some common experiences may include:

  • Body aches and pains
  • Fatigue
  • Changes in appetite
  • Insomnia
  • Feeling anxious or overwhelmed
  • Loss of concentration
  • Feeling impatient or irritated
  • Lacking motivation or a loss of interests that were previously preferred
  • Constant worry, hopelessness, or isolation

For providers, burnout can look like:

  • Emotional exhaustion
  • Depersonalization
  • Feeling a lack of competence/self-efficacy
  • Increased mistakes/errors at work
  • Safety issues for client/providers
  • Lack of engagement
  • Poor retention rate
  • Poor customer/client satisfaction

Although these signs are seen, this is not a complete reflection of what everyone can experience. What’s important regardless of if you are a provider or caregiver is to take care of yourself. Give yourself compassion, patience, and prioritize selfcare.

Some suggestions for selfcare include:

  • Asking others for help/support
  • Practicing healthy boundaries by accepting your capacity
  • Talk to other caregivers/providers
  • Take regular breaks
  • Attend social activities
  • Prioritize needs – eating healthy, exercise, taking in sunshine
  • Maintaining sleep schedule
  • Mindfulness – building awareness of current state
  • Evaluate alternative options

Selfcare is not limited to these options. It can look like engaging in a preferred activity, taking a bubble bath after a long day, or even listening to a favorite song and singing along. Even making a favorite meal can be an act of compassion for yourself. The ultimate focus should be easing discomfort, exhaustion, and those symptoms that accompany burnout.

If you are experiencing burnout and would like to explore professional support, VitalCare offers therapy services as well as recommendations for managing symptoms you may be experiencing.

Sources for this article originated form the following websites:


Provider Spotlight – Meghan

We would like to recognize Meghan for always striving to enhance the lives of those she cares for while working for VitalCare with a beautiful self-care gift box. She does so with extreme kindness, compassion, and empathy while keeping her VitalCare family informed of pertinent client information and needs. We often hear from her clients, “Meghan is my right hand, and I don’t know what I would do without her.” One of her most recent clients has needed special help and extra hours of care. Meghan has gone above and beyond to support this client, all while saying, “I will do whatever it takes to accomplish what is needed.” Meghan has worked with kids and the elderly for ten years because “being around people makes me happy.” In her spare time, Meghan likes to do diamond art (ask her about it, it’s cool!), go for walks and hang out with friends.

Provider Spotlight – Krista

Krista has been working with our VitalCare Peds team for more than 3 years!  She’s been dedicated to the special needs community for the last 30 years, and most recently, Krista has spent the last 10 years teaching kiddos with special needs in the Jeffco School district.  She does respite part time with VitalCare and the families she cares for would consider her part of their family.

Krista found her passion for working with people with special needs back in her own elementary school days when she had a close friend with a diagnosis of Muscular Dystrophy.  Her passion and dedication shine through in every interaction Krista has with her kids and the VitalCare office.  She is an outstanding caregiver. 

In Krista’s spare time, she loves to get outdoors.  This includes backcountry camping, fly fishing, rock-climbing, and traveling.  She also loves to bake macarons.  We are so honored to have Krista as part of the team and hope she can enjoy some self-care from SelfCareby3DSuccess.

February issue of the Westminster City Lifestyle

Cheryl Schuberth’s article “Food Is Love” in the February issue of the Westminster City Lifestyle magazine is a quick read about a journey her family embarked on during the COVID pandemic.  They decided to create weekly meals from different regions of the world.  The whole family joined in to cook together and create lasting memories.  This adventure was so impactful to Cheryl and her family that she wrote a book about it.  Measure, Mix & Marinate: Embracing the Key Ingredients to a More Fulfilling Life. 

What did you and your family do to make lasting memories during the COVID pandemic?

More information on Cheryl Schuberth can be found on her website. https://key-ingredients.com/

“once-in-a-generation” opportunity to revamp the Mental Health System in Colorado

I have been following the articles written by Jennifer Brown from the Colorado Sun with a great deal of interest. She is a great writer and has covered many aspects of the Mental Health System in Colorado over the last few months.  Find links to the articles below.

Jennifer Brown points out, Colorado has a “once-in-a-generation” opportunity to revamp the Mental Health System with funding from the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund established by the CARES Act.

As a provider of Mental Health Services, VitalCare interacts with the seven Regional Accountable Entities (RAE) contracted with Health First Colorado, Colorado’s Medicaid program. The RAEs authorize and manage the mental health benefits of the Health First Colorado members who live in their geographic region. 

One would expect these RAEs to operate similarly and provide the same benefits to their members.  Unfortunately, they all operate differently and have different rules, reimbursement rates, rejection rates/reasons, and pre-authorization requirements. They also have different billing systems.  This complex network creates an “administrative burden” for the providers.

Often, providers decline to work with a particular RAE due to frequent billing denials, lower reimbursement rates, or extended wait times to become credentialed as an authorized provider.  The Health First Colorado members in some regions may have very few providers to choose from, due to these factors. 

As a provider, I would like to see some of the funds allocated to creating a statewide system, with one rule set, one billing system and standardized reimbursement rates like the medical side of Health First Colorado.  The inefficiencies of the current RAE system limit the options available to Health First Colorado members and create regional inequities in the availability and quality of services.

What are your thoughts?  How would you like to see these funds utilized?