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Sharoon Sarfraz
Shamsa Rafique
Aqib Dil Awaiz
Sadaqat Aftab
Fatima Majeed
Sarah Zarish


Work stress, Increased workload, lack of resources, staff shortage.


During the COVID-19 pandemic, limited resources, longer shifts, disturbances to sleep and work-life imbalance led to the exhaustion, stress, anxiety and burnout among the healthcare community. This study aimed to explore the experiences of Intensive Care Unit (ICU) nurses regarding their work stress and working conditions during COVID-19 pandemic in Lahore, Pakistan.  Four public sector tertiary hospitals of Lahore, Pakistan were selected which were providing COVID-19 care to the patients. Nurses who had more than 2 weeks of experience in the COVID-19 ICU were selected.  A qualitative phenomenological study design was used to get insight into the nurse’s experiences. Data was collected using individual interviews. An analysis of the ICU nurse`s experience yielded two main themes; difficult working conditions during the COVID-19 outbreak and poor resource management. This study concluded that health care professionals were under significant workload strain as a result of coronavirus pandemic, increased work hours, lack of sleep quality, fatigue, staff shortage and lack of resources were associated with work related stress.

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