Effect of COVID-19 on Mental Health of Healthcare Professionals of Karachi
Keywords:COVID-19, Mental Health, Health Personnel
Objective: To assess the impact of COVID-19 on the mental health of healthcare professionals from district central, Karachi.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out at Hamdard University Dental Hospital, Karachi, from October 2021 to June 2022. The study population consisted of dentists, doctors and dental/medical students of clinical years. Data collection from healthcare professionals was performed using an online questionnaire through different social networking sites such as Whatsapp and Facebook. Data were analyzed by SPSS version 21 whereas binary logistic regression was applied for inferential analysis.
Results: A total of 205 participants were included in the study with a response rate of 100%. The mean age of the study participants was 31.54±8.64 years, 121 (59.0%) of them were aged up to 30 years, 110 (53.7%) of them were females, 99 (48.3%) of them were dentist whereas 57 (27.8%) were doctors by profession. Moreover, 100 (48.8%) participants were found to have an impact of COVID-19 on their mental health. Furthermore, multivariable logistic regression analysis revealed that profession of the healthcare professionals was significantly associated with the impact of COVID-19 on their mental health where both dentists and doctors had significantly lower odds of having an impact of COVID-19 on their mental health than dental/medical students of clinical years (AOR 0.16, 95% CI 0.06-0.42, p<0.001 and AOR 0.18, 95% CI 0.06-0.52, p=0.001 respectively).
Conclusion: A little less than half of the healthcare professionals included in the study had an impact of COVID-19 on their mental health. Moreover, healthcare students had significantly higher odds of having such an impact than healthcare practitioners. Authors recommend provision of psychological counseling, implementation of safety measures and the availability of related protective equipment for the healthcare workers, particularly for dental and medical students, to enable them to deal with their patients in a minimal risk environment.