Psychosocial factors and mental health in Mexican healthcare workers during the COVID-19 pandemic

Arturo Juárez-García, Anabel Camacho-Ávila, Javier García-Rivas, Oniria Gutiérrez-Ramos

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17711/SM.0185-3325.2021.030

Abstract


Introduction. The World Health Organization has estimated a significant increase in mental disorders due to the COVID-19 pandemic and has identified healthcare workers as a vulnerable group. In Mexico, the impact of this pandemic on the mental health of healthcare workers and the psychosocial factors associated with it remain unknown.

Objective. To identify levels of stress, burnout, anxiety, and depression and their relationship with negative psychosocial stressors and positive psychosocial resources in healthcare workers in Mexico during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Method. As a part of a larger project in certain Latin American countries, 269 health workers from various Mexican clinics and hospital centers initially participated in a non-experimental, cross-sectional correlational design. Participants were recruited by targeted sampling. Various ultra-brief measures were used to measure symptoms of depression, anxiety, burnout, and stress and a mixed-methods exploration technique was used to identify associated psychosocial factors, which were also explored with cluster analysis.

Results. We found high levels of depressive and anxiety symptoms (56.9% and 74.7%), as well as burnout and stress (49.8% and 46.8%). Although the stressors “infection of self” and “family infection” (38.3% and 30.9%) and the resources “family” and “personal protective equipment” (34.6% and 24.5%) were the most frequent, there were more than 20 factors in each category differentially associated with mental health. Cluster analysis made it possible to identify representative sets of psychosocial variables.

Discussion and conclusion. The increased risk in mental health for health care workers is confirmed in a preliminary way and the stressors and resources to be considered in preventive strategies to address COVID-19 pandemic in Mexico are identified.

Keywords


COVID-19 pandemic; mental health; healthcare workers; psychosocial factors

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References


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