Experiences and challenges faced by patients with COVID-19 who were hospitalized and participated in a randomized controlled trial: a qualitative study
The study titled “Experiences and challenges faced by patients with COVID-19 who were hospitalized and participated in a randomized controlled trial: a qualitative study” explores the personal experiences and challenges of COVID-19 patients during their illness and treatment.
Here’s a detailed summary:
Study Objectives and Design
- This qualitative study aimed to understand the experiences and challenges of hospitalized COVID-19 patients. It was embedded in a multicenter randomized active-controlled open-label platform trial, testing the efficacy and safety of experimental therapeutics for COVID-19 patients (Austrian Corona Virus Adaptive Clinical Trial).
Key Themes Identified
- Theme 1: A Severe Disease
- Patients reported a wide range of symptoms, including high fever, hallucinations, sleeping problems, cough, shortness of breath, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, weakness, exhaustion, and gustatory dysfunction. Loss of taste and smell alerted some to the possibility of SARS-CoV-2 infection early in their disease course. The intensity and severity of the virus were often unexpected, catching patients off guard.
- Theme 2: Saved and Burdened by Hospitalization
- The hospital was perceived as a safe haven by many, with patients expressing satisfaction and gratitude towards the hospital staff. However, hospitalization also brought challenges, including feelings of isolation and the psychological burden of not seeing family and friends. The time spent in intensive care was particularly exhausting, yet patients felt well cared for by the medical staff.
- Theme 3: Managing One’s Own Health
- Self-management played a crucial role in patients’ experiences. They reported actively seeking medical help, using oxygen oximeters to monitor their condition, and adjusting their behavior based on observed changes in health parameters. The support from family members and healthcare professionals was vital, providing both practical assistance and psychological comfort.
Conclusion and Implications
- The study provides an in-depth view of the personal experiences of COVID-19 patients, highlighting the complexity of their journeys through illness, hospitalization, and participation in a clinical trial. It underscores the importance of understanding patient perspectives to improve care and support for those battling COVID-19.
In summary, this research offers valuable insights into the physical, emotional, and psychological impacts of COVID-19 on patients, emphasizing the need for comprehensive and compassionate care approaches that address both medical and emotional needs.