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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 150-154

Assessment of anxiety level of emergency health-care workers by generalized anxiety disorder-7 tool

1 College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
2 College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences; King Abdullah International Medical Research Center, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
3 King Abdullah International Medical Research Center, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
4 King Abdulaziz Medical City Pediatric Emergency Department, Ministry of National Guard Healthcare, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Nesrin Alharthy
Department of Pediatric Emergency, College of Applied Medical Sciences, Female Branch, King Saud Bin Abdulaziz University, National Guards, Riyadh
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2229-516X.212963

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Background: Dealing with emergency patients is considered to be a stressful situation to all health-care workers in the emergency department (ED). Prolonged stress predispose to physical and inconsequential psychiatric disturbances. Anxiety and depressive mode were found to be the most commonly experienced psychiatric manifestation among emergency health-care workers. The aim of this study is to screen and assess the severity of anxiety among health professionals working in ED. Methods: Cross-sectional study design was used. Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)-7 screening tool was used to assess for anxiety symptoms. GAD-7 is a validated self-report tool that comprises seven questions where each question is rated on a 3-point scale. Demographic data were collected from the study sample. The study sample consists of emergency physician, nurses, and other emergency medical services workers. Data analysis was performed using SAS version 9.2 software. Descriptive statistics, nonparametric comparison, and correlation were performed as part of data analysis. Results: A total of 135 participants completed the questionnaire, of which, 66% of the participants were males. Occupational status of the respondents indicated that majority (35.6%) were physicians followed by 27.4% of emergency medical, and 27% of nurses. The results of this study indicated that 48% of the subjects were observed without an anxiety disorder. However, moderate to mild degrees of anxiety disorder was identified among 20.7% and 23.7% of the subjects, respectively. Severe anxiety disorder was found among 7.6% of the respondents. Emergency medical services workers were reported to have the highest GAD-7 score followed by physicians and nurses P = 0.039. Gender and older age group among health professionals were statistically significant correlated with higher GAD-7 score P = 0.028 and 0.048, respectively. There is no significant difference in GAD-7 score among health professional dealing with adult versus pediatrics patient. Conclusion: From this study, it was concluded that more than 52% of the health-care team members manifested with moderate to severe anxiety disorder that requires counseling and referral for support and treatment. Prolonged and unrecognized anxiety may predispose to major psychiatric morbidity, exhaustion, and resignations from the duties. Hospital administration needs to be aware of the level of anxiety and the most likely affected population to build preventive strategies.

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