Mental Health of Health Professionals Facing COVID-19

doctors 2020

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Ms. Carolina Martins Coelho, fifth period medical student at Centro Universitário do Planalto Central Apparecido dos Santos-UNICEPLAC. She is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.


From 2019 many people have been showing solidarity for the health professionals who work against Coronavirus. Every day, at 8 pm, Spanish people start a round of applause for health workers. The Empire State in New York, activates every night, since March 31, the emergency siren in red and white in order to remember and thank the teams in action. In Italy, medical teams from other countries, who arrived in the country, were received with celebration. On World Health Day, Brazilians went to the windows to show solidarity.

In Brazil alone, there are approximately 3.5 million workers working in the Sistema Único de Saúde (SUS) and they are constantly challenged by the lack of personal protective equipment, work overload, and impacts on mental health.

It is noticed that often the emotional factor is strongly influenced by personal issues, but also by technical issues. In the day-to-day life of the professional, the act of hand hygiene, doing the dressing, undressing and other care we have is almost an automatic task, and because it is a big pandemic and requires greater care, this whole process is faced as a novelty and everything new generates a certain amount of insecurity and anxiety. Second point is the lack of sufficient equipment for everyone, if it is used incorrectly, or for a longer time than recommended, it is evident that this will generate losses for the worker. The risk of contamination, if any of these tasks are done incorrectly, is high and this makes professionals increasingly apprehensive, in addition to their work colleagues.

In the family bias, with the leave to work, and the families imprisoned due to quarantine, there can be a physical leave and also an overload of both. For the family the overload of information, not always true for those who follow all types of news. And, for professionals, being fully involved in this scenario without being able to have exhaust valves. The family approach is one of the most important things for the health professional, as it is the main support network and is the primary point of anyone’s life. Many of them without this support end up facing several problems related to mental health such as depression, anxiety, disorders, etc. So, the recommended thing is to try, to promote a virtual meeting with the family members, trying to demystify false news, besides allowing them to communicate about their anxieties and

Finally, it is important to emphasize that the responsibility for combating the coronavirus lies in the fruit of a constructive relationship between those who are ahead and is sworn to serve the population and raise their awareness, and the entire population that can do its part by not running out of PPE stocks, not sharing fake news, remaining in quarantine and having more empathy with others, helping to advance the resolution of the problem.

Bibliographic References:

CDC. Center for Disease Control and Prevention-CDC Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Mental Health and Coping, March 6, 2020. Disponível em: https://www.cdc.gov/ coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/coping.html, acesso em 11/03/2020

IASC. Inter-Agency Standing Committee ( Comitê Permanente Interagências). Diretrizes do IASC sobre saúde mental e apoio psicossocial em emergências humanitárias. Tradução de Márcio Gagliato. Genebra: IASC, 2007.

Organização Panamericana da Saúde. Primeiros cuidados psicológicos: guia para trabalhadores de campo. Brasília, DF: OPAS, 2015

About the author

Carolina Martins Coelho, fifth period medical student at Centro Universitário do Planalto Central Apparecido dos Santos-UNICEPLAC. Constantly searching for knowledge in the medical field, interested in films, documentaries, books, travel and music, involved in volunteer work, academic activities such as congresses and symposia organization, the board of academic leagues and the preparation of academic articles. She always seeks to reconcile academic and personal life and to be learning more every day to be a good professional in the future.

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

In DR Congo, UN Security Council says December polls are ‘historic opportunity’ for country

Redistribution of seats in the European Parliament after Brexit

The Impact of climates changes in health: a problem for all of us

Congolese expelled from Angola returning to ‘desperate situation’: UN refugee agency

Mexico must increase foreign bribery enforcement: full implementation of anti-corruption reforms could help

UN expresses concern following wave of street protests in Iraq and elsewhere

This company helps women to become solar entrepreneurs

Why are so few women buying into Bitcoin?

The EU adopted €297 million in concrete actions for refugees and local communities in Jordan and Lebanon

Budget MEPs back €1.6 million to help 400 former workers of Carrefour Belgium

Mobility package: Transport Committee backs deal with EU Ministers

Myanmar companies bankroll ‘brutal operations’ of military, independent UN experts claim in new report

Gender parity has a huge role to play in the fight to save our oceans

How much more political is the new EU leadership? Does this include personal bend?

“Be aware where you put your I Agree signature on and something else”; now Facebook by default opts you in an unseen private data bazar

India should ‘unlock’ freedom curbs in disputed Kashmir, urges UN human rights chief

It’s not just the protests. Here’s how young people are helping the planet

COVID-19 is likely to increase youth unemployment in Africa, this is how business can mitigate the damage

Tax and fiscal policies central to governments’ responses to Covid-19 crisis

Draghi repels Trump’s threats, rejects Schauble’s dictums

Summer 2018 Interim Economic Forecast: Resilient Growth amid increased uncertainty

UN global education envoy urges new funding for ‘lost generation’ of children forced out of classrooms by conflict

The new Kiev rulers ask $35 billion from the West

Joint statement by EU and UK negotiators following the videoconference on 15 April 2020

‘Power is not given, power is taken’, UN chief tells women activists, urging push-back against status quo

3 ways to fight stress at work

Does the Erasmus program really contribute to the construction of a solid EU identity?

Statement by the European Commission following the first meeting of the EU-UK Joint Committee

We’ve lost 60% of wildlife in less than 50 years

The Banking Union divides deeply the European Union

COP25: Global investors urge countries to meet climate action goals

AIESEC Vlog

Making Europe’s businesses future-ready: A new Industrial Strategy for a globally competitive, green and digital Europe

Further reforms needed for a stronger and more integrated Europe

General Elections in Spain: Twitter organises the first digital debate to empower young people.

In Mozambique, it’s ‘a matter of the heart’ says Guterres, lauding the cyclone-struck nation’s ‘undeniable moral authority’

European Commission requests that Italy presents a revised draft budgetary plan for 2019

The digital transformation is a skills and education opportunity for all. Companies must use it

We have a chance to build the gender-equal workplaces of the future. Here’s how

FROM THE FIELD: India’s plastic waste revolution

How technology and play can power high-quality learning in schools

Digital transformation and the rise of the ‘superjob’

5 leadership lessons I learned from doing my own ‘undercover boss’

Eurozone: Retail sales and inflation point to recession

Ozone on track to heal completely in our lifetime, UN environment agency declares on World Day.

Encouraging progress made in 2018, in ‘zero tolerance’ effort to end sexual exploitation and abuse across UN

5 things we get wrong about young people, according to a US study

‘Do something’; UN relief chief urges Security Council action to stop the Syrian carnage unfolding ‘in front of your eyes’

No agreement in sight on EU budget

UN panel to rally global political will to tackle internal displacement crisis

Strength in unity: Commission makes recommendations for the EU’s next strategic agenda 2019-2024

The cost of generating renewable energy has fallen – a lot

European Innovation Scoreboard 2018: Europe must deepen its innovation edge

This plastic drinks bottle is made from plants

UN chief commends African Union on adoption of institutional reforms

Norway has successfully enforced its foreign bribery laws but faces potential obstacles

5 things to know about the US opioid epidemic

Inspiring young doctors: the beginning of the change

Ten UN peacekeepers killed in a terrorist attack in northern Mali

Driving structural change through global value chains integration

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s