Impelling Factors for Contracting COVID-19 Among Surgical Professionals During the Pandemic: A Multinational Cohort Study

Wah Yang, Ali Haider Bangash, Johnn Henry Herrera Kok, Chandra Cheruvu, Chetan Parmar, Arda Isik, Michail Galanis, Francesco Di Maggio, Semra Demirli Atici, Mohamed Abouelazayem, Samik Kumar Bandyopadhyay, Yirupaiahgari K.S. Viswanath


Background: Medical workers, including surgical professionals working in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) treating hospitals, were under enormous stress during the pandemic. This global study investigated factors endowing COVID-19 amongst surgical professionals and students.

Methods: This global cross-sectional survey was made live on February 18, 2021 and closed for analysis on March 13, 2021. It was freely shared on social and scientific media platforms and was sent via email groups and circulated through a personal network of authors. Chi-square test for independence, and binary logistic regression analysis were carried out on determining predictors of surgical professionals contracting COVID-19.

Results: This survey captured the response of 520 surgical professionals from 66 countries. Of the professionals, 92.5% (481/520) reported practising in hospitals managing COVID-19 patients. More than one-fourth (25.6%) of the respondents (133/520) reported suffering from COVID-19 which was more frequent in surgical professionals practising in public sector healthcare institutions (P = 0.001). Thirty-seven percent of those who reported never contracting COVID-19 (139/376) reported being still asked to practice self-isolation and wear a shield without the diagnosis (P = 0.001). Of those who did not contract COVID-19, 75.7% (283/376) were vaccinated (P < 0.001). Surgical professionals undergoing practice in the private sector (odds ratio (OR): 0.33; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.14 - 0.77; P = 0.011) and receiving two doses of vaccine (OR: 0.55; 95% CI: 0.32 - 0.95; P = 0.031) were identified to enjoy decreased odds of contracting COVID-19. Only 6.9% of those who reported not contracting COVID-19 (26/376) were calculated to have the highest overall composite level of harm score (P < 0.001).

Conclusions: High prevalence of respondents got COVID-19, which was more frequent in participants working in public sector hospitals. Those who reported contracting COVID-19 were calculated to have the highest level of harm score. Self-isolation or shield, getting two doses of vaccines decreases the odds of contracting COVID-19.

J Clin Med Res. 2023;15(4):233-238


COVID-19; Surgical professionals; Medical students; Multinational; Burnout

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