September 15, 2022

Effects of COVID-19 on mental health, coping strategies of residents

By: Judy Mathias

Editor's Note

In this survey of surgical, internal medicine, emergency medicine, and psychiatry residents by researchers from Florida Atlantic University’s Schmidt College of Medicine, Boca Rotan, residents reported having effective coping strategies during the early phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. A total of 59 residents completed the survey.

Results showed that:

  • 88.1% believed they were likely or very likely to become infected with COVID-19
  • 28.8% believed that if they became infected with COVID-19, their illness would be serious or very serious
  • residents’ mean scores of depression, anxiety, and stress were in the normal range, however, surgical and emergency medicine residents reported higher levels of depression
  • residents’ top three strategies to cope with COVID-19 were acceptance, self-distraction, and use of emotional support.
  • residents’ least three strategies used to cope with COVID-19 were behavioral disengagement, substance use, and denial.

The findings of this survey are important because residents play essential roles in caring for patients and communities and will inevitably face many challenging circumstances as they serve on the frontlines of healthcare, the researchers say.


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