Panaji: While world battled COVID-19 pandemic, several nurses who were helping the patients to recover, especially during the second wave, were themselves undergoing trauma, a study has revealed.
The research published in Indian Journal of Psychiatric Nursing by experts including G Balamurgan, G Radhakrishnan and M Vijayarani has revealed that the common mental health issues experienced by the Indian nurses was fear, burnout, anxiety and fatigue followed by stress, depression, insomnia and work-life imbalance.
Referring to the research paper during a press conference held in Panaji on Thursday, the Indian Society of Psychiatric Nurses (ISPN) has said that the plight of the nurses in India needs to be highlighted.
Dr K Reddemma, President, ISPN said that the COVID-19 pandemic had bearing on the own mental health of the nurses, who were treating the patients.
“During COVID-19 pandemic, the nurses stood by the patients. The nurses wearing PPE kits were not able to breathe and even not go out (of the hospitals),” she said.
The ISPN India officials are in Goa to participate in the three-day-long Annual Conference scheduled to begin on Friday at Institute of Nursing Education, Bambolim. Prof Dr Wilson Fernandes introduced the dignitaries during the press conference.
Reddemma said that to pay tributes to the nurses for their work during the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Health Day will be commemorated on April 07, 2023 as “Samarpan Day.”
Radhakrishnan, who has co-authored the paper highlighting the mental plight of the nurses during the pandemic, said that the ISPN and Indian Nursing Council had supported the nurses working in the COVID-19 battle during the second wave.
The list of mental health nursing volunteers with their phone number, preferred language, and preferred time was hosted on the INC website as well as on the ISPN India website, he said.
G Balamurgan, who has also co-authored the same research paper, said that from May 2021 to August 2021, the volunteers received around 177 calls. During May and June 2021, there was an upward trend in the number of calls, from then the calls were gradually reduced.
“This trend is correlated with the number of COVID-19 cases in India during the second wave, which shows that the caseload was directly affecting the Nurses’ Mental Health,” he added.