Mental health status of health sector and community services employees during the COVID-19 pandemic

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Kabasakal E., ÖZPULAT F., AKCA A., ÖZCEBE L. H.

INTERNATIONAL ARCHIVES OF OCCUPATIONAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH, vol.94, no.6, pp.1249-1262, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 94 Issue: 6
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s00420-021-01678-y
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, PASCAL, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, EMBASE, Environment Index, MEDLINE, Pollution Abstracts, Public Affairs Index, Veterinary Science Database
  • Page Numbers: pp.1249-1262
  • Keywords: COVID-19, Mental health, Occupational health, Health sector employee, Community services employee, PSYCHOLOGICAL IMPACT, CARE WORKERS, RISK, PERCEPTION, EPIDEMIC, FATIGUE, CHINA, SARS
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Purpose This study was conducted to evaluate the depression, anxiety and stress status of health sector and community service workers who were actively working during the pandemic period. Methods This is a descriptive study. A total of 735 people consisting of 426 health sector employees and 309 service sector employees, constituted the study sample. In this study, the data were collected using the personal information form and the Depression Anxiety Stress Scales-21 (DASS-21). A regression model was established to test the effect of socio-demographic characteristics on depression, anxiety, and stress levels during the COVID-19 pandemic. Results While there was no difference in working a second job across different sectors (p = 0.450), the household income (p < 0.001) and the increase in expenditures during the COVID-19 pandemic (p < 0.001) were different across the sectors. The scores of the overall scale and its sub-dimensions were significantly different across the sectors (p < 0.001). The DASS-21 scores were higher in the participants, who started to smoke more and who had their sleep duration decreased (p < 0.001). There is a statistically significant difference between social media use and the DASS-21 score (p < 0.001). There is a significant difference across all DASS-21 subgroups by the daily working hours in the health sector (p < 0.001). Conclusion Our study provides significant findings regarding the mental health of individuals who continued working during the pandemic. To implement effective mental health interventions to risk groups and affected people in the COVID-19 pandemic, the recommendations of leading organizations, including WHO and ILO, should be implemented effectively concerning occupational health.