Int J Environ Res Public Health 20 (14) - [2023-07-19; online 2023-07-19]
The COVID-19 pandemic occurred in 2020, and affected people's daily life worldwide at work and at home. Healthcare workers are a professional group with heavy workloads, and during the COVID-19 pandemic, their burden increased. The literature from earlier outbreaks describes risks for affected mental health in frontline workers, and the main aim of this study is to examine healthcare workers' quality of life during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, we sought to assess if there was any difference in working at a pandemic ward compared to anon-pandemic ward. In this longitudinal and descriptive study, a total of 147 healthcare workers assessed their perceived health every third month over one year using the RAND-36 health survey. RAND-36 is a general instrument that consists of 36 questions and is widely used for assessing quality of life. The healthcare workers in this study showed reductions in perceived quality of life during the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Healthcare workers on a pandemic ward reported a lower score in RAND-36 compared to healthcare workers on a non-pandemic ward. Registered nurses and licensed practical nurses seemed more negatively affected in their quality of life than physicians. Compared to data from the general Swedish population, healthcare workers in this study had less energy during this period.