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Open AccessArticle

COVID-19 Pandemic and Death Anxiety in Security Forces in Spain

Department of Sociology, University of Murcia, Campus Universitario, 11, 30100 Murcia, Spain
Department of Social Work and Social Services, University of Murcia, Avda. Teniente Flomesta, 5, 30003 Murcia, Spain
Department of Education, University of Extremadura, Avda. de Elvas, s/n, 06006 Badajoz, Spain
College of Education, Ana G. Méndez University, Cupey Campus, San Juan, PR 00926, USA
College of Education Sciences & College of Sociology, Social Work and Public Health, University of Huelva, Campus El Carmen, Avda. de las Fuerzas Armadas, s/n, 21007 Huelva, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(21), 7760;
Received: 30 September 2020 / Revised: 19 October 2020 / Accepted: 20 October 2020 / Published: 23 October 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Health: Emotions in the Workplace)
The pandemic caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, which produces COVID-19 disease, has revealed to political and social circles a series of needs that have not yet been met. The workers of the State Security Forces and the Armed Forces have done an extraordinary job to try to alleviate the effects that the pandemic has had on the population and to return stability to the citizenry as much as possible. In this context, the following investigation is developed based on two objectives: (PO1) to know the level of anxiety in the face of death in these professionals; (PO2) to determine the predictive variables in the above-mentioned phenomenon. Professionals from all over Spain have participated in the study (n = 2079). From a quantitative perspective, a questionnaire was developed from the Collet–Lester death anxiety scale. The results show a total level of 69.2% in the scale, as well as some higher levels about the fear of death of others (82.1%) and the fear of the process of dying of others (78.2%). On the other hand, from the binary logistic regressions, four variables are evidenced that condition the risk of suffering death anxiety: (a) certainty of needing psychological treatment in the future; (b) absence of Individual Protection Equipment (PPE); (c) high levels of Emotional Exhaustion; (d) high levels of depersonalization—these last two come from the Maslach and Jackson Burnout scale. These data show a need for training and intervention in the emotional and psychological demands of the professionals of the Armed Forces and State Security Forces, as well as the obligation to develop a continuous dialogue with the institutions they represent to foster the feeling of belonging to them. It is essential, regardless of the serious consequences that the virus has caused, to understand the psychosocial and emotional demands of enforcement agents and to improve their occupational health. View Full-Text
Keywords: death anxiety; burnout; police; armed forces; state security forces; occupational health death anxiety; burnout; police; armed forces; state security forces; occupational health
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MDPI and ACS Style

Lázaro-Pérez, C.; Martínez-López, J.Á.; Gómez-Galán, J.; Fernández-Martínez, M.d.M. COVID-19 Pandemic and Death Anxiety in Security Forces in Spain. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 7760.

AMA Style

Lázaro-Pérez C, Martínez-López JÁ, Gómez-Galán J, Fernández-Martínez MdM. COVID-19 Pandemic and Death Anxiety in Security Forces in Spain. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(21):7760.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Lázaro-Pérez, Cristina; Martínez-López, José Á.; Gómez-Galán, José; Fernández-Martínez, María d.M. 2020. "COVID-19 Pandemic and Death Anxiety in Security Forces in Spain" Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 17, no. 21: 7760.

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