How the occupational balance of healthcare professionals changed in the COVID-19 pandemic: A mixed design study

GÜNEY YILMAZ G., Zengin G., Temucin K., Aygun D., AKI E.

AUSTRALIAN OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY JOURNAL, vol.68, no.6, pp.520-534, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 68 Issue: 6
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1111/1440-1630.12762
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, ASSIA, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Psycinfo
  • Page Numbers: pp.520-534
  • Keywords: coronavirus, occupational balance, occupations, time using, RETROSPECTIVE RECALL, THERAPY, PERCEPTION
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Background Although it has been possible for many people to make a gradual transition to normal life or routine activities, the same seems far off for healthcare professionals. The current study examines in depth how the occupational balance of healthcare professionals has changed in the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods The current study has a mixed design, which involves collecting both qualitative and quantitative data. In the first stage of the study, which is the quantitative one, Turkish Occupational Balance Questionnaire (OBQ11-T) was used to collect data, whereas the second stage of the study, which is the qualitative one, was designed to explore occupational balance and the related issues via using semi-structured interviews. The Mann-Whitney U test was used to compare parameters between the groups (working in active-passive contact with COVID patients). On the other hand, qualitative data were evaluated via consensual qualitative data analysis. Results The level of occupational balance of healthcare professionals included in the study group was found to be significantly lower than the level of occupational balance of healthcare professionals included in the control group (P = .005). Although there was no clear problem in self-care activities of healthcare professionals, the balance between productivity and leisure time activities was disrupted. Conclusions Occupational balance and leisure time use of healthcare professionals, especially those who have active contact with COVID patients, have been affected. A further investigation can be carried out according to gender, age, and other demographic qualities.