Mental well-being of intensive care unit nurses after the second surge of the COVID-19 pandemic: A cross-sectional and longitudinal study

Hidde Heesakkers*, Marieke Zegers, Margo M.C. van Mol, Mark van den Boogaard

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: To determine the impact of the second surge of the COVID-19 pandemic (October 2020 to June 2021) on mental well-being of intensive care unit nurses and factors associated with mental health outcomes. Methods: An online survey was available for Dutch intensive care unit nurses in October 2021, measuring mental health symptoms; anxiety, depression (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale), and post-traumatic stress disorder (Impact of Event Scale-6). Additionally, work-related fatigue was measured using the Need For Recovery-11 questionnaire. Previous data from the first surge (March until June 2020) were used to study mental well-being longitudinally in a subgroup of intensive care unit nurses. Logistic regression analyses were performed to determine factors associated with mental health symptoms. Results: In total, 589 nurses (mean age 44.8 [SD, 11.9], 430 [73.8 %] females) participated, of whom 164 also completed the questionnaire in 2020. After the second surge, 225/589 (38.2 %) nurses experienced one or more mental health symptoms and 294/589 (49.9 %) experienced work-related fatigue. Compared to the first measurement, the occurrence of mental health symptoms remained high (55/164 [33.5 %] vs 63/164 [38.4 %], p = 0.36) and work-related fatigue was significantly higher (66/164 [40.2 %] vs 83/164 [50.6 %], p = 0.02). Granted holidays as requested (aOR, 0.54; 95 % CI, 0.37–0.79), being more confident about the future (aOR, 0.59; 95 % CI, 0.37–0.93) and a better perceived work-life balance (aOR, 0.42; 95 % CI, 0.27–0.65) were significantly associated with less symptoms. Conclusion: The second surge of the COVID-19 pandemic further drained the mental reserves of intensive care unit nurses, resulting in more work-related fatigue.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103313
JournalIntensive and Critical Care Nursing
Volume74
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was partly funded by Stichting Radboud Fonds (dossier No. 2020 307595-7). Stichting Radboud Fonds had no role in the design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of the data; preparation, review, or approval of the manuscript; and decision to submit the manuscript for publication.

Publisher Copyright: © 2022 The Author(s)

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