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Submitted: 31 Jul 2020
Accepted: 10 Oct 2020
ePublished: 30 Dec 2020
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  Abstract View: 44

Original Article

Evaluation of Health Anxiety in Healthcare Workers During Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic

Mehdi Behjati Ardakani ORCID logo, Teamur Aghamolaei ORCID logo, Mehdi Hasani Azad ORCID logo, Moussa Soleimani Ahmadi ORCID logo, Fatemeh Zare ORCID logo, Marzieh Khademian ORCID logo, Mohammad Reza Zare ORCID logo, Hadi Eshaghi Sani 6, Abdolhossain Madani ORCID logo, Mehdi Zare* ORCID logo

1 Social Determinants in Health Promotion Research Center, Hormozgan Health Institute, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran.
2 Infectious and Tropical Diseases Research Center, Hormozgan Health Institute, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran.
3 Department of Public Health, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Science, Tehran, Iran.
4 Bandar Abbas City Health Center, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran.
5 Department of Environmental Health, Ewaz School of Health, Larestan University of Medical Sciences, Larestan, Iran.
6 Department of Occupational Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran.

Abstract

Background: Considering the importance of health anxiety (HA) and its impact on the management
of a pandemic, the present study investigated HA among healthcare workers during coronavirus
disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
Materials and Methods: The sample of this cross-sectional study consisted of 220 healthcare staff
working in health centers and hospitals in Iran. Participants were selected using convenience
sampling method. The data collection tool was a two-part questionnaire. The first part contained
demographic information and the second part included a health anxiety questionnaire (HAQ). This
questionnaire was provided to the target community through social media and the required data
was collected. Data analysis was carried out using IBM SPSS Statistics for Windows, version 21 (IBM
Corp., Armonk, N.Y., USA).
Results: In the present study, out of 220 participants 128 (58.2%) were employed in health centers
and 92 (41.8%) in hospitals. The mean HA score was 17.36 ± 7.66. Moreover, the mean HA scores
in health center and hospital personnel was 17.81± 8.02 and 16.52 ± 6.78, respectively, which
were not significantly different (P = 0.217). The results showed that exercise and chronic disease are
significant predictors of HA (P = 0.0001 and P = 0.043, respectively).
Conclusion: The HA level was very high in healthcare personnel during the COVID-19 pandemic.
This study showed that physical activity and having an underlying disease are important predictors
of HA. Hence, in order to reduce the level of anxiety in healthcare personnel, it is recommended to
plan regular physical activity programs and make changes in the work schedule of personnel with
underlying disease.
Keywords: Health anxiety, Health personnel, Medical personnel, COVID-19
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