COVID-19 restrictions and psychological well-being of fathers with infants admitted to NICU-An exploratory cross-sectional study

Esther Abena Adama, Flora Koliouli, Livio Provenzi, Nancy Feeley, Edwin van Teijlingen, Jillian Ireland, Frances Thomson-Salo, Minesh Khashu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

AIM: To describe the impact of the COVID-19 restrictions on the caregiving activities and psychological well-being of fathers with infants admitted to neonatal units.

METHODS: Cross-sectional study using adapted COPE-IS and COPE-IU tools. Participants' recruitment occurred online via social media and parents' associations. Online survey in English, French and Italian were distributed and promoted via websites and social media platforms of parent's associations. The study was undertaken across 12 countries in Asia, Australia, Africa and Europe.

RESULTS: A total of 108 fathers of NICU infants completed the survey. COVID-19 related restrictions were categorised into 3 types: no restrictions, partial and severe restrictions. Fathers who experienced partial restrictions reported more involvement in caregiving activities but high levels of emotional difficulties and sleeping problems compared to those who experienced full or no restrictions.

CONCLUSION: Given the impact on the psychological well-being of fathers, restrictions should be avoided as much as possible in the neonatal unit and fathers given free access to their infants if they follow appropriate infection control precautions.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Paediatr. Int. J. Paediatr.
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Jun 16 2022

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