Results from the first study of its kind published today in American Journal of Infection Control (AJIC) indicates that immunologists have experienced severe psychological and physical problems due to concerns about the COVID-19 epidemic. The study, which focused on health, well-being of disease-prevention people, and their association with occupational health programs, highlighted the need to address the medical and clinical problems that lead to fatigue and poor health, as well as improve programs and workplace culture.

Prevention providers have a responsibility to reduce the risk of health-related illnesses (HAIs) in hospitals and other clinics, including long-term care and surgical facilities. During the COVID-19 epidemic, these experts are expected to monitor rapid changes, significant increases in HAI and increased workload, as well as a decrease in personal protective equipment (PPE) and personnel, among other challenges.

Preventionists have been working to combat the COVID-19 epidemic for more than two years, however, there have been no studies to assess their health and fitness and how this relates to occupational hygiene programs and culture. This is important because the health and well-being among health professionals not only affects them, but also affects their health and safety. “

Bernadette Mazurek Melnyk, PhD, chief medical officer and dean of the College of Nursing at The Ohio State University is the lead author of the study.

Dr. Melnyk and colleagues conducted a study examining the mental and physical well-being of dementia sufferers, as well as the link between these factors and the professional roles of the population, the support they receive in the workplace, the duration of change and race / ethnicity. The study was sent by e-mail to members of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC), a leading organization for patients.

Responses from 926 experts indicate that those who have been vaccinated against the disease are more likely to be affected by the epidemic, and that social work, the amount of care they receive at work and the length of the transition period are important factors. Findings include:

  • Large numbers of respondents also reported that the COVID-19 epidemic had a significant impact on their health (74%) and / or body weight (60%).
  • Rates of depression, anxiety and fatigue among respondents were 21.5%, 29.8% and 65.2%, respectively.
  • Most respondents said the epidemic disrupted their sleep (77%), exercise (64.5%) and poor nutrition (61.1%).
  • Future caregivers (74.1%) and caregivers / caregivers (76.3%) had more psychological problems than their peers with other responsibilities (e.g., teacher, researcher, medical doctor).
  • Immunologists who work 9-11 + hours a day were more likely to report being healthy during the epidemic compared to their counterparts who worked <8 hours a day.
  • Immunologists with public health care had less chance of experiencing the psychological and physical complications of the COVID-19 epidemic.

The authors suggest that health care providers take a number of measures to better protect the health and safety of patients, including addressing issues that are known to cause fatigue and poor health among co-workers (e.g., short-term employment), implementing strategies that seek to boost resilience. and self-esteem. maintenance and implementation of short-term replacement shortcuts.

“Immunologists have been instrumental in providing hospitals with safe care during the COVID-19 epidemic,” said Linda Dickey, RN, MPH, CIC, FAPIC, President of APIC 2022. employers to have health-promoting programs to keep these talented professionals afloat. “


Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC)

Magazine overview:

Melnyk, BM, and al. (2022) Relationships between psychiatrists, lifestyle systems, transition duration, race, and occupational health care on COVID-19. American Journal of Infection Control.

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