Psychological distress and PTSD among clinicians in Roma, Lesotho during the COVID-19 pandemic

South African Family Practice

Field Value
Title Psychological distress and PTSD among clinicians in Roma, Lesotho during the COVID-19 pandemic
Creator Kambulandu, Muila Ogundipe, Radiance M. Bryden, Mariel Sao, Lebohang Thompson, Dave M. McGuire, Chelsea M. Jack, Brian W.
Subject Family medicine; primary health care COVID-19; psychological distress; depression; anxiety; health workers; post-traumatic stress disorder; clinical staff
Description Background: Since 2020, the world has been battling the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. The mortality and morbidity at the height of the pandemic sparked generalised fear and uncertainty about the future. Concerns were raised about the psychological impact of the pandemic on workers in healthcare systems globally. This study was conducted to establish the degree of psychological impact of the pandemic on frontline health workers in Lesotho.Methods: The study used a quantitative cross-sectional survey design. The Kessler psychological distress screening tool (K-10) and the post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) checklist for civilians (PCL-C) were administered to screen for psychological distress among clinical staff at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Roma and its four Health Centres. Additional open- and closed-ended questions were added for context. Data were analysed using Fisher’s exact tests, Pearson chi-square tests and correlation studies.Results: Of the 101 participants, 42 (41.6%) scored ≥ 24 on the K-10 scale (95% CI: 32.0% – 51.2%) indicating moderate to severe psychological distress and 32 (31.7%) scored ≥ 50 on the PCL-C checklist suggesting severe PTSD (95% CI: 24.5% – 42.9%). High scores on the K-10 were found more among men than women (17 [37.8%] vs. 4 [7.1%]; p ≤ 0.001). Post-traumatic stress disorder was more in the younger age group (p ≤ 0.03), in those reporting anxiety (p = 0.005) and those with more co-morbidities (p ≤ 0.001).Conclusion: This study revealed the grave psychological impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on frontline clinical health workers in Lesotho.Contribution: These data will assist health leaders and policymakers to implement mental health support interventions for health workers in future.
Publisher AOSIS
Date 2024-02-29
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion — survey
Format text/html application/epub+zip text/xml application/pdf
Identifier 10.4102/safp.v66i1.5785
Source South African Family Practice; Vol 66, No 1 (2024): Part 1; 7 pages 2078-6204 2078-6190
Language eng
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Coverage Lesotho 2022 age, gender, profession
Rights Copyright (c) 2024 Muila Kambulandu, Radiance M. Ogundipe, Mariel Bryden, Lebohang Sao, Dave M. Thompson, Chelsea M. McGuire, Brian W. Jack