Frontline healthcare workers, including those who work in home care, say the COVID-19 pandemic continues to take a serious toll on their mental health, with 3 in 10 seeking mental health services.

 A Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF)/Washington Post survey of more than 1,300 healthcare workers found 62% said worry or stress over the virus has a negative impact on their mental health. More than half (56%) said stress over COVID-19 has affected their sleep and 47% reported frequent headaches and stomachaches.

The survey found the pandemic is hitting younger healthcare workers the hardest. Seven out of 10 reported feeling burned out from work. At least one in eight of the younger workers said they had at least 10 patients in their direct care die from the coronavirus in the past year.

While more than half of respondents didn’t expect life to return to normal until 2022, they did feel some sense of optimism. Most of those polled said they felt the COVID-19 outbreak is at least “somewhat under control,” including a quarter who said it was “mostly under control.” 

The project was the 35th KFF/Washington Post partnership survey with frontline workers representing hospitals, doctors’ offices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes, assisted living facilities and home healthcare firms. Those surveyed worked in a variety of roles including patient diagnosis, patient care, housekeeping and administrative services.