The Mental Health Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Health Care Workers and Coping Strategies: A Systematic Literature Review

Amal Alaradi, Sobia Irum, Nowara Ebrahim, Fatima Mohamed Jaffar Mohamed, Fatima Mohamed Jaffar Hazeem, Muhammad Ashfaq


Background: In December 2019, the COVID-19 outbreak originated in Wuhan, China. Since then, this virus has spread at a very rapid rate affecting many countries. The World Health Organization (WHO) subsequently declared a global pandemic, and a range of precautions have been implemented to reduce the spread of the virus. Some of these precautions included social distancing, self-isolation, and quarantine of those who have contracted or potentially contracted COVID-19. Healthcare workers (HCWs) are at high risk because of the constant contact with infected patients for extended periods or by exposure to a patient’s environment or biological samples. This may cause fear of transmitting the infection to their families. Also, the extended working hours put them under severe stress, fatigue, and adverse social life. All of these factors affect their behaviors and attitudes. Purpose: to explore the mental health impact of COVID-19 on HCWs as this will be reflected on their performance on such crisis. Besides, we aim to investigate HCWs' coping strategies during the pandemic and provide coping recommendations based on evidence. Methods: A systematic review using PRISMA methodology was used through three electronic databases, including PubMed, ScienceDirect, and Scopus. All cross-sectional studies that were published in English and that assessed the mental health impact of COVID-19 on HCWs or/and coping strategies adopted by them were included. Results: A total of one hundred and forty articles total were retrieved from the three databases and were reviewed for relevance. reviews for relevance after remove duplicate. We Ended up with twenty-four recent studies from 2020 that were included in the analysis. As COVID-19 has started in China, our review identified many studies that were done there on the subject of HCWs mental health due to the crisis. Italy took the second place in the number of studies. Nurses and physicians were the populations targeted in many studies. Conclusion: COVID-19 has created much pressure on HCWs. This pressure has increased the following mental health complaints: anxiety, depression, insomnia, and stress. Many studies have emphasized the effects of social support as an effective way of coping with COVID-19.


COVID-19, Mental Health, Health Care workers, Coping Strategies

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International Journal of Online and Biomedical Engineering (iJOE) – eISSN: 2626-8493
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