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Anxiety, Depression and Attention Control in Health Care Professionals

Introduction: Attention control is crucial for healthcare professionals. Anxiety and depression have the potential to interrupt attention resulting in medical errors. The literature lacks studies about the attention control of healthcare professionals. Our study aims to determine whether attention differs among healthcare professionals and to reveal its relation to common psychiatric disorders. Materials and Methods: 170 healthcare professionals were enrolled in the study. Online surveys containing informed consent, the Attention Control Scale (ATTC), the Hospital Anxiety and Depression scale (HADs), and the demographic data form were delivered to the participants by e-mail. Responses were collected online. Results: The HADs scores revealed almost 48% anxiety and 60% depression in healthcare professionals. The highest anxious and depressive group was the doctors’ group. This finding may be linked to the higher responsibility of doctors on the patients. Correlation analysis showed negative correlations between psychiatric disorders and attention regardless of the subgroups of the healthcare professionals. A multivariate regression analysis revealed a significant impact of anxiety on attentional scores, rather than depression. Conclusion: Anxiety and depression may interfere with attention control which may result in medical errors. So, these disorders in health care professionals need periodical screening to prevent attention deficits and consequent malpractice and health care quality disruption. At this point, the attention control scale is a beneficial and practical test for the assessment of the attentional status of healthcare professionals.

Anxiety, Attention, Healthcare Professionals, Malpractice, Medical Error, Health Care Quality

Guven Arslan. (2023). Anxiety, Depression and Attention Control in Health Care Professionals. International Journal of Psychological and Brain Sciences, 8(3), 23-28.

Copyright © 2023 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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