COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19

A special issue of COVID (ISSN 2673-8112).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 August 2023) | Viewed by 38210

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University of Duisburg-Essen, LVR-University Hospital, 45147 Essen, Germany
Interests: COVID-19; public mental health; post-COVID; psychooncology; mental health and somatic illnesses; eHealth

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The ongoing and challenging COVID-19 pandemic has now, for a long time, been a public health crisis of unimaginable proportions. Not only does the virus pose a lingering threat to the physical health of many people, but the mental health burden has also increased during times of lockdowns, restrictions, and global economic crises. Additionally, the emerging psychosocial burden of the so-called “Post-COVID-Symptom-Complex” is a new aspect of the continuous pandemic.

This Special Issue of COVID focuses on these different aspects and many more. Articles addressing what developments in the psychosocial burden took place during the pandemic, the role of corona fear/post-COVID fear, and relevant psychosocial factors considering the Post-COVID-Symptom-Complex are of particular interest to this Special Issue. Furthermore, articles presenting data on interventions, especially eHealth interventions and the need for eHealth interventions for burdened groups, as well as review articles on mental health burden are particularly welcome.

Prof. Dr. Eva-Maria Skoda
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. COVID is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • psychosocial burden
  • post-COVID
  • (e)mental health interventions

Published Papers (20 papers)

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Editorial

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4 pages, 208 KiB  
Editorial
Long COVID: An Epidemic within the Pandemic
by Camilla Mattiuzzi and Giuseppe Lippi
COVID 2023, 3(5), 773-776; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3050057 - 19 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2970
Abstract
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), a life-threatening infectious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was first identified in the Chinese city of Wuhan in late 2019 and has subsequently spread worldwide, reaching pandemic proportions [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)

Research

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17 pages, 863 KiB  
Article
A Qualitative Analysis of Older Adults’ Cognitive Appraisal in Coping during the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Role of Social Capital
by Linying Dong, Alexandra Katsiris, Mariah Lecompte, Cassandra Skrotzki and Lixia Yang
COVID 2023, 3(10), 1622-1638; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3100111 - 19 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1258
Abstract
The ability to adaptively cope with the challenges of stressful events such as the COVID-19 pandemic is crucial for healthy aging. One effective coping strategy is social coping in which social networks are tapped for support. However, our review of the current literature [...] Read more.
The ability to adaptively cope with the challenges of stressful events such as the COVID-19 pandemic is crucial for healthy aging. One effective coping strategy is social coping in which social networks are tapped for support. However, our review of the current literature on older adults’ coping abilities reveals two shortcomings: (1) a lack of consideration of a specific context and (2) an inadequate amount of attention paid to the different types of social networks in the cognitive appraisal process. As coping is a process in which older adults undergo the cognitive appraisal process to identify appropriate coping strategies, the shortcomings result in an incomplete understanding of older adults’ coping efforts and impair the development of effective community and intervention programs to improve older adults’ well-being. To fill this gap, drawing on the Transactional Model of Stress and Coping and the Social Capital Theory, we conducted 22 interviews with older adults who experienced lockdown measures during COVID-19. Our in-depth qualitative analysis shows the different roles played by bonding and bridging social capital in the cognitive appraisal process and illustrates the influence of a specific context on cognitive appraisals and subsequent coping efforts. Our findings provide significant contributions to theories regarding coping and social capital, as well as practices and policies for improving the well-being of older adults. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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10 pages, 256 KiB  
Article
Housing Status and COVID-19 Prevention Recommendations among People Who Use Drugs
by Izza Zaidi, Ashly E. Jordan, Lauren Jessell, Leonardo Dominguez Gomez, Alex Harocopos and Michelle Nolan
COVID 2023, 3(10), 1612-1621; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3100110 - 17 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1103
Abstract
Housing conditions can increase health risks for people who use opioids (PWUO). Little research documents the influence of housing on PWUO’s ability to practice disease prevention methods. This study examines associations between housing status of PWUO in NYC and their ability to practice [...] Read more.
Housing conditions can increase health risks for people who use opioids (PWUO). Little research documents the influence of housing on PWUO’s ability to practice disease prevention methods. This study examines associations between housing status of PWUO in NYC and their ability to practice COVID-19 prevention recommendations during the initial wave of the pandemic. Participants were recruited via convenience sampling and administered a survey. Eligibility required age ≥18 years, using opioids ≥3times in the prior 30 days, and accessing a health-related service in the prior year. Descriptive and bivariate statistics assessed relationships between housing and the ability to practice social distancing, access soap and running water or hand sanitizer (soap), and access face masks. Multivariable Poisson regression was used to examine relationships between housing and the potential to practice COVID-19 prevention recommendations. The 329 participants were grouped into stable housing (34.3%), unstable/shelter housing (31.9%), and street homeless (33.7%) categories. Street homeless PWUO were significantly less likely to have access to soap and face masks than those stably housed. There were no significant differences between PWUO experiencing unstable and stable housing. PWUO experiencing street homelessness may have had increased vulnerability to COVID-19. Providing low-threshold health-related resources and increasing linkages to housing opportunities could promote health of PWUO experiencing street homelessness during future emergencies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
15 pages, 304 KiB  
Article
Psychotherapy Incorporating Equine Interaction as a Complementary Therapeutic Intervention for Young Adults in a Residential Treatment Program during the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Katie Holtcamp, Molly C. Nicodemus, Tommy Phillips, David Christiansen, Brian J. Rude, Peter L. Ryan and Karen Galarneau
COVID 2023, 3(10), 1571-1585; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3100107 - 4 Oct 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1511
Abstract
Substance use disorder has become an epidemic in the young adult population across the United States, and these numbers rose during the COVID-19 pandemic. Psychotherapy incorporating equine interaction has emerged to show promise in the mental health community as a complementary form of [...] Read more.
Substance use disorder has become an epidemic in the young adult population across the United States, and these numbers rose during the COVID-19 pandemic. Psychotherapy incorporating equine interaction has emerged to show promise in the mental health community as a complementary form of therapy for this age group and offered a viable treatment option during the pandemic due to the outdoor nature of the treatment environment. However, research concerning its use within a residential treatment program was lacking. The objective of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of psychotherapy incorporating equine interaction in a residential treatment program during the COVID-19 pandemic for developing an emotionally safe environment for learning for young adults. Participants (ages 18–25 years) were those in a substance abuse residential treatment program utilizing psychotherapy incorporating equine interaction during the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants were involved in weekly equine therapy for 2–7 weeks. Participants were divided according to length of stay at the residential facility and participation level with equine interactive activities. Assessment of emotional safety and long-term memory development was performed at the beginning and end of the treatment program. The development of memories centered around equine information that was covered during the treatment program. Semantic memory was assessed using a self-reporting knowledge exam and procedural memory was assessed using a skill evaluation. Emotional safety was determined using a self-reporting survey instrument. Paired t-tests determined significant improvement in emotional safety (p = 0.02) and semantic (p = 0.01) and procedural (p = 0.00) memory for all participants by the end of the program. The one-way analysis of variance indicated length of stay and participation level were not significant indicators of emotional safety (length of stay: p = 0.91, participation level: p = 0.98) and semantic (length of stay: p = 0.09, participation level: p = 0.60) and procedural (length of stay: p = 0.25, participation level: p = 0.09) memory development. These results suggest psychotherapy incorporating equine interaction was an efficient complementary therapeutic intervention for developing emotional safety and encouraging learning in a young-adult residential addiction treatment program during the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
16 pages, 1009 KiB  
Article
Research Staff COVID-19 Pandemic Survey-Results from the Prevention and Early Treatment of Acute Lung Injury (PETAL) Network
by Jasreen Kaur Gill, Andrew Bissonette, Aaron A. Cook, Anja Kathrin Jaehne, Jacqueline Day, Sheri Renaud, Gordon Jacobsen, Kristine Nelson, Lori-Ann Kozikowski, Namita Jayaprakash, Jayna Gardner-Gray, Jennifer Swiderek, Cathryn F. Oldmixon, Nancy J. Ringwood, Robert L. Sherwin, Mark D. Williams, Arielle Hodari Gupta, Nicholas J. Johnson, Robert C. Hyzy, Pauline K. Park, Emanuel P. Rivers and on behalf of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute PETAL Clinical Trials Networkadd Show full author list remove Hide full author list
COVID 2023, 3(10), 1528-1543; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3100104 - 23 Sep 2023
Viewed by 1256
Abstract
Objectives: There is a lack of knowledge about the challenges of researchers who continued in-person research during the early phases of the COVID-19 pandemic. Design: Electronic survey assessing work-related exposure to COVID-19, logistical challenges, and procedural changes during the first year of the [...] Read more.
Objectives: There is a lack of knowledge about the challenges of researchers who continued in-person research during the early phases of the COVID-19 pandemic. Design: Electronic survey assessing work-related exposure to COVID-19, logistical challenges, and procedural changes during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic on clinical research. Setting: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute-sponsored Prevention and Early Treatment of Acute Lung Injury Clinical Trial Network Centers. Subjects: Research staff at research Network Sites. Measurements and Main Results: The 37-question survey was completed by 277 individuals from 24 states between 29 September 2020, and 12 December 2020, yielding a response rate of 37.7%. Most respondents (91.5%) indicated that non-COVID-19 research was affected by COVID-19 research studies. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, 20% of respondents were reassigned to different roles at their institution. Many survey takers were exposed to COVID-19 (56%), with more than 50% of researchers requiring a COVID-19 test and 8% testing positive. The fear of infection was 2.7-times higher compared to pre-COVID-19 times. Shortages of personal protective equipment were encountered by 34% of respondents, primarily due to lack of access to N95 masks, followed by gowns and protective eyewear. Personal protective equipment reallocation from research to clinical use was reported by 31% of respondents. Most of the respondents (88.5%), despite these logistical challenges, indicated their willingness to enroll COVID-19 patients. Conclusions: During the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, members of the research network were engaged in COVID-19 research despite logistical challenges, limited access to personal protective equipment, and fear of exposure. The research network’s survey experience can inform ongoing policy discussions to create research enterprises that can dexterously refocus research to address the knowledge gaps associated with novel public health emergencies while mitigating the effect of pandemics on existing research projects and research personnel. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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14 pages, 949 KiB  
Article
Attachment and Coping in the Second Pandemic Year: The Impact on Loneliness and Emotional Distress
by Andrei Hopulele-Petri, Mihaela Fadgyas-Stănculete and Mirela Manea
COVID 2023, 3(9), 1322-1335; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3090092 - 1 Sep 2023
Viewed by 1607
Abstract
Pandemic restrictions and reduced social opportunities led to increased loneliness in affected countries. Considering that stressful situations activate the attachment system and engage various coping strategies, the present study explored the role of attachment dimensions and coping styles in perceived social isolation and [...] Read more.
Pandemic restrictions and reduced social opportunities led to increased loneliness in affected countries. Considering that stressful situations activate the attachment system and engage various coping strategies, the present study explored the role of attachment dimensions and coping styles in perceived social isolation and the subsequent effect on emotional distress. Data were collected using an online survey between the third and fourth waves in Romania during the second year of the pandemic. Correlational analyses presented significant relationships between all variables measured. Regression analysis showed that attachment insecurity could predict up to half of the variance in loneliness and one-third of emotional distress. Coping styles that predicted both loneliness and emotional distress were problem-focused and socially supported coping, though the effect was minimal. Emotion-focused coping presented a protective role against loneliness. Finally, mediation analysis revealed how loneliness fully mediated the relationship between insecure attachment styles and emotional distress. Further implications for research on loneliness and pandemic resilience are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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11 pages, 255 KiB  
Article
Characterising the Educational Experiences and Mental Health of Children with Pre-Existing Learning Difficulty or Specific Learning Disorder (SLD) during the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Cathy Catroppa, Elle Morrison, Nicholas P. Ryan, Noor Khan, Edith N. Botchway-Commey, Stella Moe, Chandelle Piazza, Kaitlyn Corso, Gabriel Rae, Catherine Bull, Emma McIntosh, Vicki Anderson, Louise Crowe, Claire Stonier-Kipen and Nikita Tuli Sood
COVID 2023, 3(9), 1233-1243; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3090087 - 25 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1284
Abstract
This prospective study sought to characterise the educational experiences, mental health, and behavioural functioning of Australian children with a pre-existing learning difficulty or specific learning disorder (SLD) during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study also evaluated the potential role of parent psychological distress as [...] Read more.
This prospective study sought to characterise the educational experiences, mental health, and behavioural functioning of Australian children with a pre-existing learning difficulty or specific learning disorder (SLD) during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study also evaluated the potential role of parent psychological distress as a risk factor for poorer child functioning in this high-risk population. Using a prospective longitudinal design, the study involved 58 parents of children and adolescents with a pre-existing learning difficulty or specific learning disorder (M age = 11.9 years; range 7–17 years) who were initially referred to a state-wide diagnostic centre for specific learning disorders in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Child outcomes were assessed using the COVID-19 Wellbeing and Mental Health Survey (a modified version of the CoRonavIruS Health Impact Survey [CRISIS] tool), the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ), and the Emotional Distress Scale from the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS). Parents’ mental health was assessed using the CRISIS tool and the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K10). In keeping with initial predictions, a large proportion of parents expressed significant disruption to child educational experience and routines, including challenges related to child engagement in remote learning platforms during COVID-19. Compared to pre-pandemic mental health symptom ratings, children experienced significantly higher symptoms of worry, negative thoughts, loneliness, agitation, and aggression during the pandemic period (all p < 0.05). As expected, higher levels of parent distress predicted greater child worry symptoms (p = 0.003) and more frequent child behavioural difficulties (p = 0.004). These results help elucidate the specific psychological and educational challenges faced by children with pre-existing learning difficulty or SLD during the COVID-19 pandemic. Family-centred intervention and/or supports may help to address the unique educational and psychological needs of young people with pre-existing learning differences and their families during future global pandemics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
15 pages, 1335 KiB  
Article
A Survey of Changes in the Psychological State of Individuals with Social Withdrawal (hikikomori) in the Context of the COVID Pandemic
by Takafumi Ogawa, Yuki Shiratori, Haruhiko Midorikawa, Miyuki Aiba, Daichi Sugawara, Naoaki Kawakami, Tetsuaki Arai and Hirokazu Tachikawa
COVID 2023, 3(8), 1158-1172; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3080082 - 8 Aug 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1591
Abstract
Background: The coronavirus disease (COVID) 2019 pandemic has been reported to have resulted in psychological disturbances. The Japanese term “hikikomori” refers to a state of preferring to stay at home. The COVID pandemic provided an opportunity to extend our current understanding of hikikomori [...] Read more.
Background: The coronavirus disease (COVID) 2019 pandemic has been reported to have resulted in psychological disturbances. The Japanese term “hikikomori” refers to a state of preferring to stay at home. The COVID pandemic provided an opportunity to extend our current understanding of hikikomori by examining the psychological states of individuals who were in this state under lockdown, during which, paradoxically, their condition may have been adaptive. Methods: We administered a questionnaire to examine psychological changes among 600 people with hikikomori traits in Japan. The Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), Subjective Stress Scale, and Stigma Questions for hikikomori were administered retrospectively at three time points. We also collected descriptive data regarding the participants’ coping strategies. Results: The participants’ sense of stigma regarding hikikomori was improved during the pandemic, whereas depression and anxiety worsened. The participants with ‘definite’ hikikomori (they met the diagnostic criteria) reported more severe depression and anxiety than those with ‘possible’ hikikomori. Their coping strategies were adaptive to the pandemic situation. Conclusion: Although the sense of stigma against hikikomori was improved and adaptive strategies were employed, the participants with hikikomori experienced a worsening of depression and anxiety during the COVID lockdowns. The improvement of stigma and the participants’ indoor adaptive coping strategies could not ameliorate the mental state of hikikomori. Therapeutic interventions should be considered in the future for definite hikikomori meeting the criteria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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15 pages, 1196 KiB  
Article
Perspectives of Non-Hospitalised Patients with COVID-19 Self-Isolating for 10 Days at Home: A Qualitative Study in Primary Care in Greece
by Despoina Symintiridou, Ilias Pagkozidis, Stavroula Mystakidou, Charis Birtsou, Stella Ploukou, Stavroula Begou, Martha Andreou, Michael Dandoulakis, Elias Theodoropoulos, Chrysanthi Manolaki, Ioanna Avakian, Efthymia Makridou, Christina Avgerinou, Dimitra Iosifina Papageorgiou and Emmanouil Smyrnakis
COVID 2023, 3(6), 882-896; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3060064 - 6 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2016
Abstract
The aim of this qualitative research, conducted in Spring 2021, was to identify the inconveniences and the psychological and social impact of 10 days of home isolation, required by law, in non-hospitalised COVID-19 patients in Greece and to improve management. Thirty-seven semi-structured telephone [...] Read more.
The aim of this qualitative research, conducted in Spring 2021, was to identify the inconveniences and the psychological and social impact of 10 days of home isolation, required by law, in non-hospitalised COVID-19 patients in Greece and to improve management. Thirty-seven semi-structured telephone interviews were conducted, audio-recorded, and transcribed verbatim. Thematic analysis identified four key emergent themes, i.e., everyday life during self-isolation, psychological issues, social issues, and information and guidance. Food provisioning was of particular concern. Solidarity was expressed to individuals in need. Isolation was not always viable due to space constraints and the necessity to care for sick family members. Fear of transmission to vulnerable groups, hospitalisation, irreversible complications, and death as well as anxiety, insecurity, guilt, and alienation were articulated. COVID-19 disrupted the normal functioning of families and led to revision of interpersonal relationships. Patients avoided re-integration in society due to the transmitter stigma and to limit the risk of infection spread in the community. Over-information promoted fear. Mild illness raised doubts about information validity. Primary care provided monitoring and psychological support. Home isolation caused disruption in various aspects of participants’ life, ranging from logistic problems to dealing with the psychological burden of isolation and illness. Primary care could play a central role in supporting patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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16 pages, 317 KiB  
Article
Differences in Perceived Stress and Depression among Weight (Dis)Satisfied Midwestern College Students during COVID-19
by Cedric Harville II and Ellen Santos
COVID 2023, 3(5), 757-772; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3050056 - 18 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1989
Abstract
Background: Stress and depression are common mental health concerns among college students. Factors related to weight status and stigma are associated with poor mental health outcomes. We sought to describe the prevalence of weight dissatisfaction in relation to stress and depression among college [...] Read more.
Background: Stress and depression are common mental health concerns among college students. Factors related to weight status and stigma are associated with poor mental health outcomes. We sought to describe the prevalence of weight dissatisfaction in relation to stress and depression among college students (n = 551). Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted via a convenient sample between December 2020 and February 2021. Mean differences in the Perceived Stress Scale-10 scores and Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale scores were examined using a one-way analysis of variance. Associations between stress, depression, and weight dissatisfaction were measured by logistic regression. Results: Weight dissatisfied (75.1%) students had significantly higher mean depression scores compared to weight satisfied. The weight dissatisfied students were 1.05 times more likely to be depressed compared to those who were weight satisfied. Significant mean differences in stress and/or depression were found for weight dissatisfied students by gender, race, parental status, marital status, residence, and U.S. citizenship. Weight dissatisfaction was higher than that reported in the literature, possibly due to the influence of social isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Conclusions: Strategies to reduce the prevalence of weight dissatisfaction for improved mental health should be explored, particularly efforts to reduce weight stigmatization and expand access to mental health care. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
13 pages, 979 KiB  
Article
Decision-Making during the Pandemic: Compassion, Trust, and the Altruistic Paradox
by Joel Myerson, Michael J. Strube, Leonard Green, Sandra Hale and Bridget Bernstein
COVID 2023, 3(5), 744-756; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3050055 - 15 May 2023
Viewed by 1344
Abstract
The occurrence of breakthrough infections with SARS-CoV-2 in vaccinated individuals argues against abandoning mitigation efforts such as social distancing. Some public health messages, however, promote vaccination by increasing psychological distress, which interferes with social distancing. Prosocial messages present an alternative approach that may [...] Read more.
The occurrence of breakthrough infections with SARS-CoV-2 in vaccinated individuals argues against abandoning mitigation efforts such as social distancing. Some public health messages, however, promote vaccination by increasing psychological distress, which interferes with social distancing. Prosocial messages present an alternative approach that may avoid this problem. Accordingly, the present study examined the relation of pandemic mitigation with scores on prosocial personality traits (i.e., altruism, sympathy, and trust) and vaccination intentions. Regression analyses indicated that while vaccination intentions increased significantly with an increase in trust, distancing increased significantly with increases in altruism and sympathy. Because older adults are much more vulnerable to COVID-19 than younger adults, these findings reveal an altruistic paradox, in which older adults, perhaps the most altruistic portion of the population, may be dependent on the altruistic behavior of younger adults, who may be the least altruistic portion. The challenge for public health messaging will be to motivate younger adults to take the consequences of their mitigation decisions for others into account. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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12 pages, 682 KiB  
Article
A Mediation Model of Self-Efficacy and Depression between Burnout and Alcohol Consumption among Health Workers during the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Alejandra del Carmen Domínguez-Espinosa, Fátima Laborda Sánchez, Alma Mireya Polo Velázquez and Graciela Polanco Hernández
COVID 2023, 3(4), 643-654; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3040046 - 20 Apr 2023
Viewed by 1362
Abstract
To verify the role played by burnout in the prediction of alcohol consumption, considering the integration of the theory of job demands-resources (JD-R) and sociocognitive theory (SCT), we developed an analytical model in which self-efficacy and depression act as mediators of this relationship. [...] Read more.
To verify the role played by burnout in the prediction of alcohol consumption, considering the integration of the theory of job demands-resources (JD-R) and sociocognitive theory (SCT), we developed an analytical model in which self-efficacy and depression act as mediators of this relationship. A cross-sectional online survey was taken by 3856 workers enrolled in various public agencies of the Mexican Health Ministry during the COVID-19 pandemic in Mexico. The results indicate that of the three dimensions of burnout, only depersonalization predicts alcohol consumption; however, self-efficacy regulates the effect of emotional exhaustion and achievement dissatisfaction on alcohol consumption. Similarly, the three components of burnout have indirect effects through depression, suggesting that depression and self-efficacy mediate the relationship between burnout and alcohol consumption. Burnout alone cannot explain alcohol consumption, but when depression is present, burnout increases the predisposition to consume alcohol; when self-efficacy is present, the probability of alcohol consumption decreases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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12 pages, 265 KiB  
Article
Predictive Role of Sociodemographic and Health Factors on Psychological Resilience during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Cross-Sectional Study in Turkey
by Şevval Çay, Beyzanur Şen, Atacan Tanaydın, Büşra Tosun, Anıl Zerey and Özge Karakale
COVID 2023, 3(4), 543-554; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3040039 - 7 Apr 2023
Viewed by 2060
Abstract
Recent global changes, including increased health risks and economic instability associated with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, highlight the need for mental health researchers to regularly and frequently monitor sociodemographic shifts. To minimise the risk of psychological complications arising from adverse events, we need [...] Read more.
Recent global changes, including increased health risks and economic instability associated with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, highlight the need for mental health researchers to regularly and frequently monitor sociodemographic shifts. To minimise the risk of psychological complications arising from adverse events, we need to identify and understand the factors linked to psychological resilience in different populations. To this end, we collected data in Turkey during the third wave of the pandemic (June 2021). The aims were to identify how the level of perceived psychological resilience changed: (1) across sociodemographic groups (age, gender, perceived economic security, caregiver status, perceived socioeconomic status, education level, perceived social isolation, and presence of acquaintances who had contracted COVID-19); (2) across health groups (smoking status, psychological or chronic illness status, and having had COVID-19); and (3) in relation to changes in fear of COVID-19. Regression analyses showed that age, gender, economic security, socioeconomic status, and illness status were factors influencing resilience, and fear of COVID-19 was negatively correlated with resilience. Young adults, females, nonbinary individuals, a low socioeconomic status, and economically insecure groups as well as people with a psychological condition were identified as lower resilience groups. The results provide insights about the predictors of perceived psychological resilience during a global crisis and help identify vulnerable populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
14 pages, 788 KiB  
Article
Long COVID-19 Symptoms among Recovered Teachers in Israel: A Mixed-Methods Study
by Inbar Levkovich and Ela Kalimi
COVID 2023, 3(4), 480-493; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3040036 - 6 Apr 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1942
Abstract
This study sought to examine the impact of long-COVID symptoms on the occupational status of teachers after recovery. A mixed-methods study was conducted in Israel in June 2022 among teachers who had recovered within the past six months. The quantitative data were collected [...] Read more.
This study sought to examine the impact of long-COVID symptoms on the occupational status of teachers after recovery. A mixed-methods study was conducted in Israel in June 2022 among teachers who had recovered within the past six months. The quantitative data were collected using a self-report online survey (n = 170) based on questionnaires, and the qualitative data were based on individual semi-structured in-depth online interviews (n = 26). Participants reported the following symptoms: fatigue (43.7%), weakness (32.2%), difficulty sleeping (27.3%), pain or discomfort (22.4%), and anxiety (20.7%). Sense of control, social support, and well-being exhibited negative correlations with long-term symptoms (p < 0.001). A multivariate regression analysis revealed that the model explained 25% of the variance in long-term symptoms and that a greater sense of control and well-being predicted lower levels of long-term symptoms. In the qualitative study, the teachers reported high levels of symptoms that impaired their functioning, including guilt, despair, and lack of work motivation. Some teachers reported that the school staff helped them cope, whereas others described the staff’s alienated attitude. The research found that fatigue, weakness, and difficulty sleeping were the primary long-term symptoms that exerted a significant impact on teachers’ functioning and well-being. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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18 pages, 496 KiB  
Article
How Did the COVID-19 Pandemic Change the Hand and Mobile Phone Hygiene Behaviors of Greek Undergraduate Students?
by Dimitrios Delitzakis, Vilelmine Carayanni, Panagiota Giakkoupi and Kyriakoula Merakou
COVID 2023, 3(2), 255-272; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3020020 - 16 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1863
Abstract
The aim of this study is to assess the influence of the COVID-19 pandemic on undergraduate students’ knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors on hand and mobile phone hygiene. An anonymous self-reported questionnaire was distributed among 100 Greek male and female undergraduate students of all [...] Read more.
The aim of this study is to assess the influence of the COVID-19 pandemic on undergraduate students’ knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors on hand and mobile phone hygiene. An anonymous self-reported questionnaire was distributed among 100 Greek male and female undergraduate students of all academic years who attended healthcare as well as non-healthcare curriculums. Descriptive statistics and statistical tests (chi-squared and Wilcoxon signed-rank test) were used (α = 5%). Students provided better responses during COVID-19, compared to the period before the COVID-19 pandemic, concerning their hand washing frequency (p < 0.001), hand washing circumstances, certain hand washing procedures, as well as their mobile phones’ cleaning/disinfection methods and frequency (p < 0.001). Statistically significant differences were observed between males and females in their knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors on hand and mobile phone hygiene, followed by faculty and year of studies. Overall, being a final-year female undergraduate student of health sciences has a positive influence on correct knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors on hand and mobile phone hygiene. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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14 pages, 283 KiB  
Article
Delivering Health Services during Early Days of COVID-19 Pandemic: Perspectives of Frontline Healthcare Workers in Kenya’s Urban Informal Settlements
by Vibian Angwenyi, Sabina Adhiambo Odero, Stephen Mulupi, Derrick Ssewanyana, Constance Shumba, Eunice Ndirangu-Mugo and Amina Abubakar
COVID 2023, 3(2), 169-182; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3020012 - 28 Jan 2023
Viewed by 2104
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused widespread disruptions to health, economic and social lives globally. This qualitative study explores frontline healthcare workers’ (HCWs) experiences delivering routine care in Kenya’s informal settlements during the early phases of the pandemic, amidst stringent COVID-19 mitigation measures. Thirteen [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused widespread disruptions to health, economic and social lives globally. This qualitative study explores frontline healthcare workers’ (HCWs) experiences delivering routine care in Kenya’s informal settlements during the early phases of the pandemic, amidst stringent COVID-19 mitigation measures. Thirteen telephone interviews were conducted with facility and community-based HCWs serving three informal settlements in Nairobi and Mombasa. Data were analyzed using the framework approach. Results indicate there were widespread fears and anxieties surrounding COVID-19 and its management. Secondly, access to facility-based care at the onset of the pandemic was reported to decline, with service availability hampered by the imposed curfew hours and guidance on the maximum allowable number of clients. HCWs experienced heightened risk of COVID-19 infection due to poor working conditions including inadequate personal protective equipment (PPE) and unavailable isolation areas for COVID-19 positive patients. HCWs also experienced stigma associated with contact with persons suspected of having COVID-19 infection, thereby causing a strain on their mental health and wellbeing. The study recommends the need for interventions to support and protect HCWs’ physical and mental health, alongside health system preparedness. Additionally, it is vital to identify ways of taking health services closer to the community to address access barriers in health emergency contexts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
15 pages, 314 KiB  
Article
Caregiver and Youth Mental Health during COVID-19: Risk and Resilience Factors in a Large National Sample in Peru
by July Caballero-Peralta, Daniel A. Antiporta, Yuri Cutipé, Rocío Vargas-Machuca, Carlos Rojas, Carla Cortez-Vergara, Johann M. Vega-Dienstmaier, Talia S. Benheim, Anamika Dutta, Juliana M. Holcomb, Felipe Peña, Michael Jellinek and J. Michael Murphy
COVID 2022, 2(11), 1594-1608; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid2110115 - 12 Nov 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1853
Abstract
The present study examined the prevalence and correlates of psychosocial impairment in a large, national sample of Peruvian children and adolescents (ages 5.0–17.9) during the COVID-19 pandemic in late 2020. A sample of 8263 online questionnaires were completed by caregivers in Peru between [...] Read more.
The present study examined the prevalence and correlates of psychosocial impairment in a large, national sample of Peruvian children and adolescents (ages 5.0–17.9) during the COVID-19 pandemic in late 2020. A sample of 8263 online questionnaires were completed by caregivers in Peru between 23 October–26 November 2020. In addition to sociodemographic and pandemic-related factors, the survey administered the Peruvian Spanish version of the Pediatric Symptom Checklist (PSC-17) to assess child psychosocial risk. The Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), Kessler-6 (K-6), and Brief Resilience Scale (BRS-6) assessed caregiver depression, psychological distress, and resilience, respectively. In this case, 33% of the children were at overall risk on the PSC-17. In adjusted models, caregiver distress, depression, and low resilience, as well as having a family member with a health risk factor were the strongest predictors of child psychosocial risk, accounting for nearly 1.2 to 2.1 times the likelihood of risk individually and 2.4 to 3.4 times the likelihood of risk when summed. Due to the opt-in sampling method, the obtained sample was likely skewed toward more advantaged families, suggesting that the study’s high prevalence of PSC-17 positivity might have been even higher in a more economically representative sample. Given the prevalence of psychosocial problems in Peruvian youth during COVID-19, preventive interventions, with a special focus on family-level approaches that involve and support parents as well as children, are clearly warranted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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Review

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22 pages, 1299 KiB  
Review
Scoping Review of Self-Directed Online Learning, Public School Students’ Mental Health, and COVID-19 in Noting Positive Psychosocial Outcomes with Self-Initiated Learning
by Carol Nash
COVID 2023, 3(8), 1187-1208; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3080084 - 16 Aug 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2024
Abstract
During COVID-19, self-directed learning, contrasted with standardized learning, became a necessary and promoted learning method in public schools—one potentially supportive of mental health regularly in public schools through the use of online learning. This is important because negative mental health has been classified [...] Read more.
During COVID-19, self-directed learning, contrasted with standardized learning, became a necessary and promoted learning method in public schools—one potentially supportive of mental health regularly in public schools through the use of online learning. This is important because negative mental health has been classified as a global crisis, with the highest and lowest student achievers recognized as at greatest risk. Therefore, the conditions under which public school students’ mental health has been improved, leading to positive psychosocial outcomes, are relevant. Studies have identified that positive psychosocial outcomes in this regard require self-initiation of students’ self-directed learning. Also necessary is a reduction in the standardized expectations of parents to lead to positive psychosocial outcomes. Unknown is what research identifies the relevance of both self-initiated self-directed online learning and a reduction in parental expectations of standardization. To investigate this, self-directed learning, online learning, mental health, public schools, and COVID-19 were keywords searched following PRISMA guidelines for scoping reviews. The result: few returns considered either factor and those that did reinforce the need for both. The conclusion: self-initiated self-directed online learning supported by public schools and parents should be central in the aim of reducing the mental health crisis in students post COVID-19. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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7 pages, 555 KiB  
Brief Report
Evusheld Prophylaxis Improves Social Interactions, Anxiety, Depression, Agoraphobia, and Quality of Life in Blood Cancer Patients
by Annabel M. Follows, Charlotte Clark, Catherine Dye, Lorraine King, Gail Skillings, Grace Byrne, Vicki Tinkler and George A. Follows
COVID 2023, 3(5), 664-670; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid3050048 - 24 Apr 2023
Viewed by 1559
Abstract
Evusheld is a combination injection of tixagevimab and cilgavimab and is indicated for the pre-exposure prophylaxis of COVID-19 in adults and adolescents aged 12 years and older. Its use has been advocated for immunosuppressed individuals, such as blood cancer patients, although uptake varies [...] Read more.
Evusheld is a combination injection of tixagevimab and cilgavimab and is indicated for the pre-exposure prophylaxis of COVID-19 in adults and adolescents aged 12 years and older. Its use has been advocated for immunosuppressed individuals, such as blood cancer patients, although uptake varies significantly between countries. Despite extensive use internationally, there has been limited analysis of potential psychological benefits that vulnerable patients might gain from receiving this prophylactic medication. In this study we have quantified four key psychological health parameters in blood cancer patients who received Evusheld (EQ5D-3L quality of life score, DSM5 Agoraphobia score, Duke’s Social Support Index and the hospital anxiety and depression score) and compared their responses with a control group of patients who did not receive Evusheld. We show that patients who opted for treatment had higher baseline markers of psychological stress and ill-health compared with non-treated individuals but that treatment with Evusheld significantly improved the psychological health of recipients and increased the level of physical social/work interactions over that of control patients. Although there are limitations with this small study, the findings strongly suggest that Evusheld prophylaxis can provide significant psychological benefits for vulnerable blood cancer patients who have significant anxiety about COVID-19 infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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26 pages, 489 KiB  
Perspective
Fear-Responses to Bat-Originating Coronavirus Pandemics with Respect to Quarantines Gauged in Relation to Postmodern Thought—Implications and Recommendations
by Carol Nash
COVID 2022, 2(10), 1303-1328; https://doi.org/10.3390/covid2100096 - 22 Sep 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2914
Abstract
Fear-responses to bat-originating coronavirus pandemics with respect to quarantine imposition are gathered and interpreted from large datasets, identified and disseminated by media. Responses are effectively gauged using postmodern thought with a continuum ranging from people’s resilience to define their own perspectives to public [...] Read more.
Fear-responses to bat-originating coronavirus pandemics with respect to quarantine imposition are gathered and interpreted from large datasets, identified and disseminated by media. Responses are effectively gauged using postmodern thought with a continuum ranging from people’s resilience to define their own perspectives to public views being socially conditioned from media persistence in maintaining fear. Public responses to the 2003 SARS pandemic generally presumed and supported resilience of citizens’ perspectives. In contrast, from late 2019 to mid-2022, public responses to the COVID-19 pandemic were media-determined, promoting fear. In this regard, reactions to the COVID-19 quarantines are contrasted to the hospital isolations of SARS. The primary source of the difference was the major polarizing influence by social media of the WHO policy makers’ pronouncements and of healthcare providers’ statements directing media spotlight in their guidance of public response to COVID-19 throughout the pandemic, unlike during SARS. An investigation of cognitive bias regarding the psychological and societal implications related to this migration from resilience to fear regarding public responses to novel bat-originating coronavirus pandemics elicits recommendations concerning future quarantine dictates. These recommendations are dependent on appropriate encouragement of hopeful resilience through evidence based practice with respect to one extreme of the postmodern thought continuum. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID and Post-COVID: The Psychological and Social Impact of COVID-19)
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