Original Article

Effects of the COVID-19 Crisis on Resident Well-Being in a Community Teaching Hospital

Authors: Camila Heluey, MD, Joseph Bahgat, MD, Josette Hartnett, MPH, Suzanne J. Rose, MS, PhD, Rebecca B. Newman, MD, Forugh Homayounrooz, MD

Abstract

Objectives: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has been an unexpected crisis that continues to challenge the medical community at large. Healthcare environments have been forced to change dramatically, including for medical residents, who are vital members of the innovative emergency response teams. Articles have previously been published on the effects of crises on the well-being of healthcare practitioners; however, there is a paucity of literature targeting medical residents’ experiences and general wellness during devastating events. The objective of our study aimed at understanding the emotional impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on residents’ stress, academics, and support systems.

Methods: An anonymous, voluntary Likert scale questionnaire was sent via SurveyMonkey to Internal Medicine and Family Medicine residents in July 2020. Questions focused on residents’ mood; stress levels; sense of support; and academics before, during, and immediately after the first surge of COVID-19 at our hospital between March 13 and June 15, 2020.

Results: Residents felt sad, stressed, and overworked during the first wave, as opposed to feelings of neutrality and happiness before and immediately after. Levels of concern for personal and loved ones’ safety were significantly increased during and after our first wave. The impact on educational training was rated as neutral. Residents noted that institutional support could be improved by the provision of wellness activities and sponsored social events.

Conclusions: This study provides insight on resident well-being during the initial months of the pandemic and identifies areas that could be improved. Our results demonstrated that the pandemic affected many aspects of residents’ well-being and education, and the lessons learned can help guide healthcare institutions when implementing wellness activities for trainees during subsequent crises.
Posted in: Infectious Disease94

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Table 1. Demographic profile of survey respondents compared with total resident population

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Table 2. Mean and SDs by time period

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Table 3. Resident wellness preferred activities assessed via multiple-response questions

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Table 4. Mean and SD levels of support during the COVID-19 pandemic

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