PLoS One. 2021 Feb 22;16(2):e0246820. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0246820. eCollection 2021.
INTRODUCTION: Multi-drug-resistant organisms (MDRO) are usually managed by separating the infected patients to protect others from colonization and infection. Isolation precautions are associated with negative experiences by patients and their relatives, while hospital staff experience a heavier workload and their own emotional reactions.
METHODS: In 2018, 35 participants (nurses, physicians, pharmacists) in an antimicrobial-stewardship program participated in facilitated discussion groups working on the emotional impact of MDRO. Deductive codings were done by four coders focusing on the five basic emotions described by Paul Ekmans.
RESULTS: All five emotions revealed four to 11 codes forming several subthemes: Anger is expressed because of incompetence, workflow-impairment and lack of knowledge. Anxiety is provoked by inadequate knowledge, guilt, isolation, bad prognoses, and media-related effects. Enjoyment is seldom. Sadness is experienced in terms of helplessness and second-victim effects. Disgust is attributed to shame and bad associations, but on the other hand MDROs seem to be part of everyday life. Deductive coding yielded additional codes for bioethics and the Calgary Family Assessment Method.
CONCLUSION: MDRO are perceived to have severe impact on emotions and may affect bioethical and family psychological issues. Thus, further work should concentrate on these findings to generate a holistic view of MDRO on human life and social systems.