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Objective: Determining the factors that influence psychological distress of healthcare workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Background: Due to the sudden occurrence and high transmission rate of the virus that causes COVID-19, many hospitals became overwhelmed and had to respond quickly to the high patient demand. This caused increased burnout among healthcare workers, which we explored on this project.
Methodology: PubMed search of peer reviewed articles under topics of burnout, distress, and mental health of healthcare workers during the COVID-19 pandemic yielded 11 articles that we focused on for this meta-narrative review.
Discussion: Articles analyzed had a higher response from nurses and women. Burnout was evaluated by using modified versions of the Maslach Burnout Inventory-General Survey which measured emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and personal accomplishment. Depression, anxiety, and insomnia were prevalent features discussed in the sources. Most of the articles highlighted that increasing psychological stress can lead to PTSD. Psychological distress was greatly influenced by job stress and high job demand. Coping mechanisms such as maintaining regular working hours, adequate supplies and protocols for safety, support, and encouraging resilience were seen to manage the increased psychological distress.
Conclusion: We observed that during the COVID-19 pandemic healthcare workers experienced significant psychological distress. We were able to identify coping mechanisms that could aid with stress management. We urge medical institutions to incorporate these measures to prevent a negative impact on the quality of patient care, and arm healthcare workers with tools to manage distress in times of drastic increases in patient caseload.
Austria, Daphnie; Best, Zane; Delgado, Nohely; De Vita, Giovanna; German, Alexis; Le, Katherine; Krumwiede Hoggatt, Kimberly; Coolbaugh-Murphy, Mary; and Juroske Short, Denise, "A Meta-narrative Review to Investigate Psychological Distress and Coping Mechanisms Among Healthcare Workers, Related to the COVID-19 Pandemic" (2023). Research Methods Poster Session 2023. 4.