Lived experiences of Palestinian patients with COVID-19: A multi-center phenomenological study of recovery journey
Aidah Alkaissi*, Fadi AlZiben, Mohammad Abu Rajab, Mahdia Alkony
Nursing and Midwifery Department, Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences- An-Najah National University
Correspondence: Dr. Aidah Alkaissi. Nursing and Midwifery Department, Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences- An-Najah National University, E.Mail: [email protected], Mobile: 00970 (0)597395520
Background: Exploring lived experiences of recovered COVID-19 patients might have scientific, social, and policy relevance that apply to the healthcare infrastructure. This multi-center phenomenological study was conducted to explore lived experiences of Palestinian patients who recovered from COVID-19.
Methods: In this qualitative study, a phenomenological descriptive approach was used. A purposive sampling technique was employed to select the study participants. Semi-structured qualitative interviews were conducted with patients who recovered from COVID-19 (n = 20). The recording was transcribed and analyzed by using Giorgio’s phenomenological analysis method.
Results: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 14 male and 6 female participants. The age of the participants ranged from 25-50 years. Nine themes and multiple subthemes emerged from the qualitative data. The themes were relevant to patient’s feelings about the experience, mental issues, social discriminations/stigma, symptoms, life in isolation, using supportive treatment, personal preventive measures, social support, and life after recovery.
Conclusion: Survivors who were interviewed in this study recounted devastating experiences with regard to their mental health, social stigmatization, feeling guilt, shame, and hesitant to regain contact with others. Mental health issues should be addressed as a part of the care plan for patients with COVID-19. More studies are still needed to investigate if introducing mental healthcare providers to the care team of patients with COVID-19 can improve the experiences of the patients.