Weathering the storm: Psychological impact of covid-19 pandemic on clinical and nonclinical healthcare workers in india

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Indian Journal of Critical Care Medicine


Background: Coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has exposed healthcare workers (HCWs) to a unique set of challenges and stressors. Our frontline workers are under tremendous psychological pressure because of the ever-rising crisis. This study was done to assess the magnitude of the psychological impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on clinical and nonclinical HCWs in India. Materials and methods: It was a cross-sectional, online survey that was done from June 1, 2020, to July 4, 2020. A total of 313 clinical and nonclinical HCWs, who were directly or indirectly involved in patient care, participated in the study. The psychological impact was assessed in terms of four variables: insomnia, anxiety, depression, and stress. Insomnia was assessed by the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI). Anxiety and depression were assessed via the Patient Health Questionnaire-4 (PHQ-4), which included a 2-item anxiety scale and a 2-item depression scale (PHQ-2). Stress was assessed via the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS). We also compared the psychological impact of this pandemic between clinical and nonclinical HCWs. Results: 7.3% of HCWs were having moderate insomnia, 3.8% had severe insomnia, and 20.8% were having subthreshold insomnia. Severe anxiety and depression were found in 6.7% of respondents. 8.0 and 32.3% of the respondents had moderate and mild anxiety–depression, respectively. 6.4% had high perceived stress. 47.6 and 46.0% of the respondents had moderate and low stress, respectively. There was a statistically significant difference in severe insomnia between clinical and nonclinical HCWs, whereas no significant difference in anxiety, depression, and stress between clinical and nonclinical HCWs. Conclusion: This study suggests that psychological morbidity is prevalent among both clinical and nonclinical HCWs and both males and females. Early intervention may be beneficial to prevent this issue.

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