A Study on the Effect of COVID-19 on the Healthcare Workers of a University Hospital

Yusuf Arman, İkbal Hümay Arman, Pemra C. Unalan

Keywords: COVID-19, effects, healthcare workers, psychological

The COVID-19 disease, which emerged in December 2019 in the city of Wuhan, China, has spread all over the world, causing a pandemic on an unprecedented scale. One of the groups most affected by this pandemic is healthcare workers.

Research questions:
What is the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on healthcare workers in a university hospital?

The research is a mixed type of research with quantitative and qualitative components. The quantitative part is observational and analytical, cross-sectional, and the qualitative part is phenomenological. After calculating the sample size, a questionnaire was applied to 351 participants who were reached through convenience sampling between July 2020 and June 2021 at Marmara University Pendik Hospital. Then, one-on-one in-depth interviews were conducted with 18 people between 18 May–2 June 2021. The interview participants were selected by extreme case sampling, based on psychological impact according to the questionnaire results. The data obtained from the questionnaire was analyzed with a statistical program. Transcripts obtained from in-depth interviews were thematically analyzed by three researchers.

Of the survey participants,189 were female(53.8%),162 were male(46.2%);108 doctors(30.8%),91 nurses(25.9%),38 other health professionals(10.8%),5 administrative(1.4%),109 assistant medical personnel(31.1%).
Of the 18 participants,4 doctors,4 nurses,5 other health professionals and 5 assistant medical personnel, who were interviewed individually,9 were male and 9 were female. 9 of the participants were highly-affected and 9 were slightly-affected.
Inadequate training, protective equipment shortages, poor working conditions, unbalanced division of labor, injustices in payments, personnel shortages, working in different departments were statistically significant and/or major themes.

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected health workers professionally, socially and individually. Making them feel listened to and supported by management can help reduce feelings of worthlessness and forlornness in some healthcare professionals, as well as increase overall motivation. Necessary efforts should be made to provide psychological support to all healthcare professionals and family members in need.

Points for discussion:
What do you think about the main reasons of these results?

What should be the priority interventions to support healthcare professionals?