A Qualitative Description of Nurses’ Psychological Responses in Caring for COVID-19 Patients: An Indonesian Context

The Open Nursing Journal 30 Sept 2021 RESEARCH ARTICLE DOI: 10.2174/1874434602115010136



COVID-19 is a dangerous, infectious disease that has affected the whole world in the past year. In Indonesia, many nurses were not only infected by the virus but also experienced varying psychological responses in providing treatment and performing their tasks. In other words, they faced the daunting responsibility of fighting the disease while taking care of COVID-19 patients.


The study aimed to describe nurses’ psychological responses in caring for COVID-19 patients in Indonesia.


This was a qualitative descriptive study involving 13 nurses. Using purposive sampling, the participants were selected from three public hospitals in Semarang, Indonesia. These nurses were assigned to take care of COVID-19 patients in the isolation room. The participants underwent face-to-face interviews, either by video calls or through an online application, using semi-structured and in-depth guidelines. The collected data were analyzed using Ello and Kyngas inductive content analysis.


During the pandemic, the nurses had the following psychological responses in caring for COVID-19 patients in Indonesia: 1) being constantly stressed in carrying out their duties; 2) having no choice but happy to help patients recover at the same time, and 3) getting closer to God as a form of spiritual relief.


This study provides fundamental data related to further psychological interventions for nurses who experience psychological problems during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Keywords: Caring, COVID-19 patients, Nurses, Psychological responses, Stress, Qualitative description.
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