Perception of the COVID-19 Pandemic among Pneumology Professionals in Germany

Pneumologie. 2020 Nov 4. doi: 10.1055/a-1240-5998. Online ahead of print.

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic represents a huge burden on global health systems. Although far-reaching prevention measures such as the increase of intensive care capacities and drastic restrictions of public life have so far been able to avert an overload of the German health care system, the current situation implies an exceptionally high burden on medical professionals. The current study presents the results of an opinion evaluation among 513 pneumology specialists in Germany in the period from March 27th to April 11th, 2020. While the majority of respondents stated that Germany was “well” prepared for the pandemic, this assessment was significantly worse among participants from the outpatient sector compared to the hospital sector (p < 0.001). Furthermore, a lack of medical protective equipment was reported significantly more frequently by respondents from the outpatient sector (p < 0.001). The importance of telemedicine approaches during the COVID-19 pandemic was rated “high” (35.2 %) or “very high” (17.2 %) by most pneumology professionals, with participants from the hospital sector giving a higher rating (p < 0.001). Finally, 45.8 % of the respondents expressed a “negative” influence of the COVID-19 pandemic on their personal mood and 58.3 % expressed “strong” or “very strong” concerns about the health of their fellow human beings. This assessment was significantly stronger among female participants and participants from the nursing sector (p < 0.001). In summary, the current study analyses for the first time the professional and personal impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on pneumology professionals in Germany. The results could help to identify first starting points to better support health professionals during the current and future challenges.

PMID:33147639 | DOI:10.1055/a-1240-5998