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Medical education and mental health during COVID-19: a survey across 9 countries

Michaeli, Daniel, Keough, Gregory, Perez-Dominguez, Francisco, Polanco-Ilabaca, Francisca, Pinto-Toledo, Fernanda, Michaeli, Julia, Albers, Sebastian, Achiardi, Jadi, Santana, Valeria, Urnelli, Chiara, Sawaguchi, Yoshihiro, Rodríguez, Perla, Maldonado, Mónica, Raffeeq, Zaheer, de Araujo Madeiros, Otavio and Michaeli, Thomas (2022) Medical education and mental health during COVID-19: a survey across 9 countries. International journal of medical education, 13. 35 - 46. ISSN 2042-6372

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Identification Number: 10.5116/ijme.6209.10d6


Objectives: To investigate students' experience with medical education alongside their mental and physical health since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic across nine countries. Methods: A cross-sectional online survey was distributed by local collaborators to 2,280 medical students across 148 medical schools in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Spain, and Venezuela using non-probability convenience sampling from June 22 to July 24, 2020. Students answered questions regarding teaching, internet use, COVID-19, physical and mental well-being. A multivariate logistic regression examined factors associated with depressed mood, insomnia, and headache. Results: Academic teaching shifted to a virtual (67%, n=1,534) or hybrid environment (23%, n=531), whilst bedside teaching was suspended or cancelled (93%, n=2,120). Across all countries students were equally satisfied with the teaching modality, quantity, quality, and the evaluation system of in-person, hybrid, and online curricula. Negative changes in mental (40% (n=912) insomnia, 57% (n=1,300) emotional irritability, 47% (n=1,072) emotional instability, 41% (n=935) anhedonia, 40% (n=912) depressed mood) and physical (36% (n=821) headache, 57% (n=1,299) ocular tiredness, 49% (n=1,117) backache) health symptoms were frequently observed. Positive associations between the number of daily screen hours and depressed mood (adjusted odds ratio (AOR)=1.09, 95%CI: 1.05-1.12, p<.001), insomnia (AOR=1.08, 95%CI: 1.05-1.11, p<.001), and headache (AOR=1.11, 95%CI: 1.07-1.14, p<.001) were identified. Conclusions: Students' experience with digital and hybrid medical curricula was diverse during the pandemic. Education modality, quantity, and quality were positively evaluated. However, students' mental and physical health worsened. Besides bedside teaching, faculties ought to digitalize and strengthen social communities and extend support services for students.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: © 2022 The Authors
Divisions: Health Policy
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Date Deposited: 17 Mar 2022 14:42
Last Modified: 24 May 2024 03:42

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