Exploring the perceptions and experiences of medical students in the care for patients diagnosed with COVID-19: A qualitative content analysis


  • Zahra Rahimian Shiraz University of Medical Sciences
  • Afrooz Feili Shiraz University of Medical Sciences
  • Ali Ardekani Shiraz University of Medical Sciences
  • Roksana Janghorban Shiraz University of Medical Sciences https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7831-8401



Palabras clave:

COVID-19, Coronavirus Infection, Pandemics, Qualitative Research, Students Medical


Introduction: Medical students faced numerous problems to combat the COVID-19 pandemic as the least experienced medical staff members. Awareness of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on medical students is essential to manage and control its adverse effects.

Objective: This study aimed to explore medical students’ perceptions and experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods: We conducted a qualitative study in May and June 2020 involving semi-structured phone interviews with 19 medical students. Data were collected through in-depth telephone interviews and analyzed with MAXQDA 10 software using the conventional content analysis proposed by Graneheim and Lundman.

Results: Thirty subcategories, six categories, and three themes emerged from the data analysis. The themes included perceived mental and emotional paradox (pleasurable feelings complicated by negative feelings and emotions), encountering catastrophe (being confronted with a lack of equipment and disorganized management; working in turmoil), and attempting to adapt to unpleasant conditions (individual efforts toward psychological adjustment; attempting to resile as a professional).

Conclusion: The COVID-19 pandemic had multiple positive and negative emotional, educational, and occupational effects on medical students. This study highlighted these effects by exploring the students’ experiences. Design of an organized pandemic response plan for medical student is recommended in various aspects of education, patient care and coping skills for future pandemics.

= 293 veces | PDF
= 136 veces|


Los datos de descargas todavía no están disponibles.

Biografía del autor/a

Zahra Rahimian, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences

Medical student, Student Research Committee, School of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.

Afrooz Feili, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences

Medical student, Student Research Committee, School of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.

Ali Ardekani, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences

MD, Student Research Committee, School of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.

Roksana Janghorban, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences

PhD in Reproductive Health, Associate Professor, Department of Midwifery, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Maternal-Fetal Medicine Research Center, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.


(1) World Health Organization. WHO Timeline - COVID-19. [Internet]. 2020. [Consultado 9 de octubre de 2020]. Disponible en: https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/27-04-2020-who-timeline---covid-19.

(2) World Health Organization. Naming the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the virus that causes it 2020. [Internet]. 2020. [Consultado 9 de octubre de 2020]. Disponible en: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/technical-guidance/naming-the-coronavirus-disease-(covid-2019)-and-the-virus-that-causes-it

(3) Tabari P, Amini M, Moghadami M, Moosavi M. International Public Health Responses to COVID-19 Outbreak: A Rapid Review. Iran J Med Sci [Internet]. 2020;45(3):157-69. https://doi.org/10.30476/ijms.2020.85810.1537

(4) Liu Q, Luo D, Haase JE, Guo Q, Wang XQ, Liu S, et al. The experiences of health-care providers during the COVID-19 crisis in China: a qualitative study. Lancet Glob Health [Internet]. 2020;8(6): e790-98. https://doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(20)30204-7

(5) Rose S. Medical Student Education in the Time of COVID-19. JAMA [Internet]. 2020; 323(21):2131-32. https://doi.org/10.1001/jama.2020.5227

(6) Nolan H, Owen K. Qualitative exploration of medical student experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic: implications for medical education. BMC Med Educ [Internet]. 2021;21(1):285. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12909-021-02726-4

(7) Al Knawy BA, Al-Kadri HMF, Elbarbary M, Arabi Y, Balkhy HH, Clark A. Perceptions of postoutbreak management by management and healthcare workers of a Middle East respiratory syndrome outbreak in a tertiary care hospital: a qualitative study. BMJ Open [Internet]. 2019:9(5):e017476. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2017-017476

(8) Pincha-Baduge MS, Moss C, Morphet J. Emergency nurses’ perceptions of emergency department preparedness for an ebola outbreak: A qualitative descriptive study. Australas Emerg Nurs J [Internet]. 2017; 20(2): 69-7. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aenj.2017.02.003

(9) Broom J, Broom A, Bowden V. Ebola outbreak preparedness planning: a qualitative study of clinicians’ experiences. Public Health [Internet]. 2017;143:103-8. DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.puhe.2016.11.008.

(10) Liang Y, Wu K, Zhou Y, Huang X, Zhou Y, Liu Z. Mental Health in Frontline Medical Workers during the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Disease Epidemic in China: A Comparison with the General Population. Int J Environ Res Public Health [Internet]. 2020;17(18):6550. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186550

(11) Preti E, Di-Mattei V, Perego G, Ferrari F, Mazzetti M, Taranto P, et al. The Psychological Impact of Epidemic and Pandemic Outbreaks on Healthcare Workers: Rapid Review of the Evidence. Curr Psychiatry Rep [Internet]. 2020;22(8):43. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11920-020-01166-z

(12) Zhang WR, Wang K, Yin L, Zhao WF, Xue Q, Peng M, et al. Mental Health and Psychosocial Problems of Medical Health Workers during the COVID-19 Epidemic in China. Psychother Psychosom [Internet]. 2020;89(4):242-50. https://doi.org/10.1159/000507639

(13) Parsons-Leigh J, Kemp LG, de-Grood C, Brundin-Mather R, Stelfox HT, Ng-Kamstra JS, et al. A qualitative study of physician perceptions and experiences of caring for critically ill patients in the context of resource strain during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. BMC Health Serv Res[Internet]. 2021;21(1):374. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-021-06393-5

(14) Liberati E, Richards N, Willars J, Scott D, Boydell N, Parker J, et al. A qualitative study of experiences of NHS mental healthcare workers during the Covid-19 pandemic. BMC Psychiatry [Internet]. 2021;21(1):250. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12888-021-03261-8

(15) Catania G, Zanini M, Hayter M, Timmins F, Dasso N, Ottonello G, et al. Lessons from Italian front‐line nurses’ experiences during the COVID‐19 pandemic: A qualitative descriptive study. J Nurs Manag [Internet]. 2021; 29(3):404-11. https://doi.org/10.1111/jonm.13194

(16) Khalil R, Mansour AE, Fadda WA, Almisnid K, Aldamegh M, Al-Nafeesah A, et al. The sudden transition to synchronized online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic in Saudi Arabia: a qualitative study exploring medical students’ perspectives. BMC Med Educ [Internet]. 2020; 20(1):285. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12909-020-02208-z

(17) Graneheim UH, Lundman B. Qualitative content analysis in nursing research: concepts, procedures and measures to achieve trustworthiness. Nurse Educ Today [Internet]. 2004; 24(2):105-12. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2003.10.001

(18) Lincoln YS, Denzin NK. The Sage Handbook of Qualitative Research. 4th ed. SAGE Publications: US (Thousand Oaks); 2011.

(19) Sun N, Wei L, Shi S, Jiao D, Song R, Ma L, et al. A qualitative study on the psychological experience of caregivers of COVID-19 patients. Am J Infect Control [Internet]. 2020; 48(6): 592-98. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajic.2020.03.018

(20) Kang L, Li Y, Hu S, Chen M, Yang C, Yang BX, et al. The mental health of medical workers in Wuhan, China dealing with the 2019 novel coronavirus. Lancet Psychiatry. 2020;7(3):e14. https://doi.org/10.1016/S2215-0366(20)30047-X

(21) Su TP, Lien TC, Yang CY, Su YL, Wang JH, Tsai, SL et al. Prevalence of psychiatric morbidity and psychological adaptation of the nurses in a structured SARS caring unit during outbreak: a prospective and periodic assessment study in Taiwan. J Psychiatr Res [Internet]. 2007;41(1-2):119-30. DOI 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2005.12.006.

(22) Xiang YT, Yang Y, Li W, Zhang L, Zhang Q, Cheung T, et al. Timely mental health care for the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak is urgently needed. Lancet Psychiatry. 2020;7(3):228-29. https://doi.org/10.1016/S2215-0366(20)30046-8

(23) Eftekhar-Ardebili M, Naserbakht M, Bernstein C, Alazmani-Noodeh F, Hakimi H, Ranjbar H. Healthcare providers experience of working during the COVID-19 pandemic: a qualitative study. Am J Infect Control [Internet]. 2021;49(5):547-54. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajic.2020.10.001

(24) Mak WW, Law RW, Woo J, Cheung FM, Lee D. Social support and psychological adjustment to SARS: The mediating role of self-care self-efficacy. Psychol Health [Internet]. 2009; 24(2):161-74. https://doi.org/10.1080/08870440701447649

(25) Main A, Zhou Q, Ma Y, Luecken LJ, Liu X. Relations of SARS-related stressors and coping to Chinese college students’ psychological adjustment during the 2003 Beijing SARS epidemic. J Couns Psychol [Internet]. 2011;58(3):410-23. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0023632

(26) Munawar K, Choudhry FR. Exploring stress coping strategies of frontline emergency health workers dealing Covid-19 in Pakistan: A qualitative inquiry. Am J Infect control [Internet]. 2021;49(3): 286-92. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajic.2020.06.214

(27) Ardekani A, Hosseini SA, Tabari P, Rahimian Z, Feili A, Amini M, et al. Student support systems for undergraduate medical students during the COVID-19 pandemic: a systematic narrative review of the literature. BMC Med Educ [Internet]. 2021;21(1):352. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12909-021-02791-9




Cómo citar

Rahimian Z, Feili A, Ardekani A, Janghorban R. Exploring the perceptions and experiences of medical students in the care for patients diagnosed with COVID-19: A qualitative content analysis. Iatreia [Internet]. 26 de octubre de 2022 [citado 26 de febrero de 2024];36(3). Disponible en: https://revistas.udea.edu.co/index.php/iatreia/article/view/348768



Artículos originales

Artículos similares

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 > >> 

También puede {advancedSearchLink} para este artículo.