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Concerns, Positive Changes, and Suggestions for Psychological Support during COVID-19: A Thematic Analysis

Meta Lavrič, Vanja Gomboc, Nina Krohne, Tina Podlogar, Vita Poštuvan, Nuša Zadravec Šedivy, Diego de Leo
Published: 1 January 2020
Sociology Mind , Volume 10, pp 187-199; doi:10.4236/sm.2020.104012

Abstract: Background: On 12 March 2020, Slovenia formally declared the presence of a pandemic of COVID-19 disease, followed by measures to stop the spread of the virus. Scope: The aim of this study was to explore how people experienced the progress of events related to the COVID-19 epidemic. Method: We conducted a general adult population survey by an online questionnaire that included—among others—three open-ended questions. Thematic analysis was applied for each question separately to identify key patterns in the data. Results: The first topic (questions about the epidemic) resulted in four core themes: concerns about the disease, concerns about the future, concerns about measures, and concerns about well-being and daily life. The second topic (positive changes during the epidemic) resulted in three core themes: changes in oneself, changes in close relationships, and changes in the environment and society. Lastly, the third topic (requests for psychological support during the epidemic) resulted in three core themes: direct help and support, information and awareness raising, and media activity. Conclusion: Overall, the themes that emerged from our study provide information that can help in understanding how people perceive the influence on their mental health and well-being of the negative and (some) positive effects of the COVID-19 epidemic. This may be helpful in the general preparedness to a feared second wave of the pandemic.
Keywords: COVID-19 Epidemic / Concerns / Positive Changes / Psychological Support / Well-Being

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