Duden, G., Reiter, J., Paswerg, A. & Weibelzahl, S. (2023). Mental Health of Healthcare Professionals during the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic – a comparative investigation from the 1st and 2nd pandemic year. BMJ Open. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2022-067244

DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2022-067244

Healthcare staff have been facing particular mental health challenges during the COVID-19-pandemic. Building on a first study at the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020, we aimed to investigate among healthcare professionals in Germany and Austria (1) how mental health may have changed in professionals over the course of the ongoing pandemic, (2) whether there are differences between different professional groups regarding mental health, (3) which stress factors may explain these mental health outcomes, and (4) whether help-seeking behaviour is related to caretaker self-image or team climate. Between March and June 2021, N=639 healthcare professionals completed an online survey including the ICD-10 Symptom Rating checklist (ISR), event-sampling questions on pandemic-related stressors and self-formulated questions on help-seeking behaviour and team climate. Findings were analysed using t-tests, regressions and comparisons to a sample of healthcare professionals assessed in 2020 as well as to norm samples. Results show that mental health symptoms, particularly for depression and anxiety, persist among healthcare staff in the second pandemic year, that symptom prevalence rates are higher among nursing staff compared to physicians and paramedics, and that team climate is associated with mental health outcomes. Implications of these findings in relation to the persisting pandemic and its aftermath are discussed.

author = {Gesa Duden and Julia Reiter and Angela Paswerg and Stephan Weibelzahl},
title = {{M}ental {H}ealth of {H}ealthcare {P}rofessionals during the ongoing {COVID-19} {P}andemic --- a comparative investigation from the 1st and 2nd pandemic year},
journal = {BMJ Open},
year = {2023},
volume = {13},
number = {3},
pages = {e067244},
doi = {10.1136/bmjopen-2022-067244}