Wellbeing in UK Frontline Healthcare Workers During Peaks One and Three of the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Retrospective Cross-Sectional Analysis

Wellbeing in UK Frontline Healthcare Workers During Peaks One and Three of the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Retrospective Cross-Sectional Analysis

Author Info

Corresponding Author
Darren K. Patten
Department of General Surgery, Barking, Havering, and Redbridge University Trust, Queens Hospital, Rom Valley Way, Romford, UK


Background: COVID-19 had a huge impact on the wellbeing of healthcare workers (HCWs). This is well documented during the first peak of the pandemic. With cases in the UK rising for a third peak, hospitalisations and deaths surpassing the first, there is very little known about the mental health of HCWs during this time. Methods: Using a questionnaire, data was collected from patient-facing staff at Barking, Havering, and Redbridge University Trust to quantify and compare the period prevalence of symptoms of depression, anxiety, and PTSD during the first peak (P1: March-May 2020) and third peak (P3: December 2020-Feburary 2021) of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as wellbeing service use, demographics of responders and what they found most difficult during the peaks. Results: Of 158 responders, only 22·4% felt they had enough access to wellbeing services during P1 and 21·5% in P3. Of those who used wellbeing services 34·4% found them useful in P1 and 34·6% in P3. 70·3% of responders felt that not enough was done for staff wellbeing. The median anxiety score decreased from P1 (10(range 5-17)) to P3 (8(range 4-16)) p=0·031. Under 30-year-olds’ depression and PTSD scores increased from P1 to P3 (depression: P1 7(1-11), P3 8(3-14), p=0·048, PTSD: P1 4(0-7) peak 3 5(2-9), p=0·037). Several groups showed a decrease in anxiety scores from P1 to P3 including; over 30-year-olds (P1 10(5-17), P3 7(3-15) p=0·002), BME responders (P1 8(3·75-15) P3 6·5(1-12) p=0·006), AHP (P1 14(7-19), P3 11(5-19) p=0·005), ITU workers (P1 15(8-18·25) P3 12(5·75-18·25) p=0·004), and those who were redeployed (P1 8(5-18·25), P3 5(2-14·75), p=0·032). Conclusion: We have observed changes in mental health symptoms within the study population as the peaks of the pandemic continue. With the majority of responders reporting they felt not enough had been done for their wellbeing support - and of those who used the wellbeing services only around 1/3 felt they were useful - we hope that this paper can help inform wellbeing provision and identify groups at higher risk of developing mental health symptoms.

Article Info

Article Type
Research Article
Publication history
Received: Wed 02, Nov 2022
Accepted: Mon 21, Nov 2022
Published: Fri 02, Dec 2022
© 2023 Darren K. Patten. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Hosting by Science Repository.
DOI: 10.31487/j.EJGM.2022.01.01