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Wed May 6, 2020, 06:43 PM

California doctors still stressed even as worries about hospital capacity subside, poll shows

Critical care doctors expressed significantly greater confidence in the availability of testing and personal protective equipment in a recent poll about the challenges of treating patients with COVID-19, yet their personal stress levels remain elevated.

The California Health Care Foundation has been working since mid-March with the physician market-research firm Truth on Call to survey 150 front-line physicians every two weeks to assess the demands on the state’s health care system, said Kristof Stremikis, director of market analysis and insight at the California Health Care Foundation.

CHCF and Truth on Call has polled hospital-based doctors in the fields of critical care, emergency medicine and infectious diseases, and in the most recent survey, more physicians indicated their stress levels were about the same or higher. That’s not good, Stremikis said, because the April 14 survey showed 51 percent of doctors felt their stress levels had risen.

“If worries around PPE, if worries around space, if worries around workforce over the next month have fallen, why would your stress level increase or stay the same?” Stremikis said. “We don’t know the answer to that. I think it’s fair to say this pandemic is unprecedented, and it’s got to be stressful for everybody, even front-line doctors, regardless of whether you think you’re going to have the equipment and space you need to treat patients over the next month.”

Read more: https://www.fresnobee.com/news/california/article242519136.html

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