Worry perception and its association with work conditions among healthcare workers during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic: a web-based multimethod survey at a university hospital in Sweden.

Worry perception and its association with work conditions among healthcare workers during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic: a web-based multimethod survey at a university hospital in Sweden.

Publication date: Feb 20, 2024

In this study, we explored healthcare workers’ (HCWs) worry perception and its association with their work situation during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. A web-based multimethods survey including multiple choice and open-ended questions was used. The study was conducted at a university hospital in Sweden. All HCWs who were working during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in March-June 2020 were eligible. HCWs (n=6484, response rate=41%) from 69 departments fulfilled the study inclusion criteria and responded to the survey. Of them, we analysed data from the 3532 participants who replied to the open-ended questions (54% of the respondents). Worry perception and its association with work conditions among HCWs. 29% (n=1822) and 35% (n=2235) of the responding HCWs experienced a daily or more than daily strong worry of being infected or infecting others with SARS-CoV-2. This finding could be further confirmed and explored with themes from the qualitative results: ‘ambiguity of feeling safe and secure’, ‘being obliged to adapt to a new reality’ and ‘into the unknown’. The themes consisted of 6 main categories and 15 subcategories. The findings revealed that the two main drivers of worry perceived by HCWs were lack of personal protective equipment and fear of bringing the virus home to their families and friends. Worries of getting infected are common among HCWs during crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic. Several factors are raised that plausibly could minimise the negative effects of worry among HCWs. Thus, effective preventive work plans should be created, promoted and communicated in order to minimise the effects of such crises and support HCWs. By focusing on effective communication and preparedness, including access to relevant protective equipment and providing general support to HCWs, the work environment and patient care could be sustained during a crisis such as the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Concepts Keywords
Healthcare COVID-19
June health workforce
March occupational & industrial medicine
Pandemic
Sweden

Semantics

Type Source Name
disease MESH COVID-19 pandemic
disease VO LACK
disease VO effective
drug DRUGBANK Coenzyme M
disease MESH infection
drug DRUGBANK Etoperidone
disease MESH burnout
disease MESH emergency
disease VO population
disease IDO process
disease VO USA

Original Article

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