Occupational health of frontline healthcare workers in the united arab emirates during the covid‐19 pandemic: A snapshot of summer 2020

Suad Ajab, Balázs Ádam, Muna Al Hammadi, Najwa Al Bastaki, Mohamed Al Junaibi, Abdulmajeed Al Zubaidi, Mona Hegazi, Michal Grivna, Suhail Kady, Erik Koornneef, Raquel Neves, António Sousa Uva, Mohamud Sheek‐hussein, Tom Loney, Florentino Serranheira, Marília Silva Paulo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


The study aim was to understand the availability of personal protective equipment (PPE) and the levels of anxiety, depression, and burnout of healthcare workers (HCWs) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). This study was an online‐based, cross‐sectional survey during July and August 2020. Participants were eligible from the entire country, and 1290 agreed to participate. The majority of HCWs were females aged 30–39 years old, working as nurses, and 80% considered PPE to be available. Twelve percent of respondents tested positive for SARS‐CoV‐2. Half of HCWs considered themselves physically tired (52.2%), reported musculoskeletal pain or discomfort (54.2%), and perceived moderate‐to‐high levels of burnout on at least one of three burnout domains (52.8%). A quarter of HCWs reported anxiety (26.3%) or depression (28.1%). HCWs reporting not having musculoskeletal pain, having performed physical activity, and higher scores of available PPE reported lower scores of anxiety, depression, and burnout. UAE HCWs experienced more access to PPE and less anxiety, depression, and burnout compared with HCWs in other countries. Study findings can be used by healthcare organizations and policymakers to ensure adequate measures are implemented to maximize the health and wellbeing of HCWs during the current COVID‐19 and future pandemics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number11410
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2021


  • Anxiety
  • Burnout
  • COVID‐19
  • Healthcare workers
  • Occupational health
  • Personal protective equipment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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