MENTAL HEALTH OF HEALTHCARE WORKERS DURING COVID-19 PANDEMIC IN UKRAINE
Introduction. Health care professionals experience severe occupational and psycho-emotional stress during the COVID-19 pandemic, which put them at high risk of mental disorders. The aim of the study was to examine the mental health of healthcare workers who provided treatment and support to patients with COVID-19.
Materials and methods. A set of standardized psycho-diagnostic scales to assess the symptoms of depression (PHQ-9), anxiety (GAD-7), insomnia (ISI) and the impact of traumatic events on psycho-emotional state (IES-R) was used for an online survey of healthcare professionals from all regions of Ukraine during 04/04/2021 to 05/29/2021. A comparative study was conducted comparing two groups of specialists who provided (n = 441) or who did not support (n = 40) patients with COVID-19 on socio-demographic characteristics and indicators of psycho-diagnostic scales.
Results. In total 500 staff were invited to take part in this survey. A signifi cant number of health workers in both groups experienced symptoms of mental disorders, indicating the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their mental health. However, in the group of medical professionals who provided care to patients with COVID-19, there were more pronounced symptoms of depression (p = 0.010), anxiety (p = 0.010), sleep disturbances (p = 0.018) compared with the group of specialists who did not provide direct care to COVID-19 patients. Statistically signifi cant diff erences were also obtained on the IES-R scale: subscales “avoidance” (p = 0.048), “intrusion” (p = 0.021), “hyperarousal” (p = 0.035).
Conclusions. Healthcare professionals who care forCOVID-19 patients have a signifi cantly increased risk of mental health problems and require particular attention and the development of special programs of psychological support and psychiatric care
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