Since the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) has spread worldwide, healthcare workers— resident physicians in particular—have been hugely involved in facing the COVID-19 pandemic, experiencing unprecedented challenges in fighting the disease. We aimed to evaluate the prevalence of poor sleep quality, daytime sleepiness, and alterations in mood state profiles in this category. This cross-sectional study, conducted in 2020, enrolled 119 subjects from a university hospital in southern Italy. Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS), Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), and Profile of Mood States (POMS) questionnaires were administered to physicians divided into four areas: anesthesiology, medicine, service, and surgery. In the overall sample, approximately 45% reported poor sleep quality, although only nine subjects (8%) reported an ESS score that suggested excessive daytime sleepiness. Alterations in mood profiles were also observed; the Vigor and Fatigue factors were the most altered. In particular, anesthesiologists seem to be the most affected category, showing a profound decrease in Vigor with a concomitant increase in Fatigue. Considering the possible consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, preventive measures should be adopted, especially those aimed at facilitating a better turnover of physicians, optimizing the working schedule, and improving the organization of work.
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