BACKGROUND Critical care teams are on the front line of coronavirus-disease 2019 (COVID-19) management, which is a stressful situation .
OBJECTIVE Our objective was to assess whether the use of social networks (SN) was associated with increased anxiety related to COVID-19 pandemic in critical care teams .
METHODS We sent an Internet survey to physicians, residents, registered and auxiliary nurses, and nurse anesthetists providing critical care (anesthesiology, intensive care, emergency medicine) in several French hospitals . The survey evaluated their use of SN, their source of information on COVID-19 and their level of anxiety and information on COVID-19 evaluated on analog scales rated from 0 to 10 (data presented as median [interquartile-range] ).
RESULTS 641 respondents were included in the final analysis; 553 were SN users (86.3 %) spending a median time of 60 [30-90] minutes/day on them . COVID-19 related anxiety was higher in SN users than in healthcare workers not using them (6 [5-8] vs. 5 [3-7] ) in univariate (P=0.02) and multivariate (P <0.001) analyses with an average anxiety increase of 10% in SN users . Anxiety was higher among healthcare workers using SN to obtain information on COVID-19 than in those using other sources (6 [5-8] vs. 6 [4-7]; P=0.04). SN users considered they were less informed on COVID-19 than those not using SN (8 [7-9] vs. 7 [6-8]; P <0.01).
CONCLUSIONS Our results suggest that SNs contribute to increased anxiety in critical care teams . In order to protect their mental, critical care professionals may want to limit their use of these networks during the coming months . CLINICALTRIAL