THE PRICE OF BATTLING COVID-19: A CROSS-SECTIONAL SURVEY
Objective: To find out the psychological impact of COVID-19 pandemic on health care workers dealing with the outbreak compared to those who did not deal with COVID-19 positive cases directly.
Study Design: Cross sectional study.
Place and Duration of Study: Online survey conducted in tertiary care hospitals of Pakistan from May 2020 to Jun 2020.
Methodology: Total 171 participants enrolled in the online survey using Google Forms and self administered proforma comprising of perceived stress score 10 and impact of event scale revised. Data was imported using Microsoft excel and analysed by SPSS v 23 software.
Results: Out of 171 participants, 105 (73 [69.3%] males, 32 (30.4%) females were dealing with COVID-19 patients. Moderate to high stress were documented in 51 (78.5%) and 4 non-COVID fighters respectively and in 66 (62.9%) and 6 (8.6%) COVID fighters. Moreover, front line Health Care Workers exhibiting a higher incidence of Post traumatic stress disorder i.e. 25 (23.8%) with Partial PTSD and 22 (21%) matching a clinical cut-off score for diagnosis of post traumatic stress disorder and 58 (55.2%) having Severe post traumatic stress disorder.
Conclusion: Our study concluded that stress and post traumatic stress disorder incidence was seen to be significantly higher in Health Care Workers who were directly dealing with COVID-19 patients as compared to those who were not dealing directly. Moreover, Health Care Workers working in setups which provided psychosocial support reported significantly lesser incidence of perceived stress and post traumatic stress disorder.