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Mental health of clinical staff working in high-risk epidemic and pandemic health emergencies a rapid review of the evidence and living meta-analysis

Bell, V; Wade, D; (2020) Mental health of clinical staff working in high-risk epidemic and pandemic health emergencies a rapid review of the evidence and living meta-analysis. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology 10.1007/s00127-020-01990-x. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

PURPOSE: The SARS-CoV-2 / COVID-19 pandemic has raised concerns about the potential mental health impact on frontline clinical staff. However, given that poor mental health is common in acute medical staff, we aimed to estimate the additional burden of work involving high exposure to infected patients. METHODS: We report a rapid review, meta-analysis, and living meta-analysis of studies using validated measures from outbreaks of COVID-19, Ebola, H1N1 influenza, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). RESULTS: A random effects meta-analysis found that high-exposure work is not associated with an increased prevalence of above cut-off scoring (anxiety: RR = 1.30, 95% CI 0.87-1.93, Total N = 12,473; PTSD symptoms: RR = 1.16, 95% CI 0.75-1.78, Total N = 6604; depression: RR = 1.50, 95% CI 0.57-3.95, Total N = 12,224). For continuous scoring, high-exposure work was associated with only a small additional burden of acute mental health problems compared to low-exposure work (anxiety: SMD = 0.16, 95% CI 0.02-0.31, Total N = 6493; PTSD symptoms: SMD = 0.20, 95% CI 0.01-0.40, Total N = 5122; depression: SMD = 0.13, 95% CI -0.04-0.31, Total N = 4022). There was no evidence of publication bias. CONCLUSION: Although epidemic and pandemic response work may add only a small additional burden, improving mental health through service management and provision of mental health services should be a priority given that baseline rates of poor mental health are already very high. As new studies emerge, they are being added to a living meta-analysis where all analysis code and data have been made freely available: https://osf.io/zs7ne/ .

Type: Article
Title: Mental health of clinical staff working in high-risk epidemic and pandemic health emergencies a rapid review of the evidence and living meta-analysis
Location: Germany
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s00127-020-01990-x
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00127-020-01990-x
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
Keywords: Anxiety, COVID-19, Depression, Mental health, PTSD, Staff
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10116875
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