HDS501: Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic on the Mental Health

Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic on the Mental Health of the Expats.

Q1 How do you feel about this statement? I would prefer to be in my home country during the Covid-19 pandemic

Q2 How frequently have the following issues disturbed you? Feeling nervous, anxious or on-edge.

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Q3 How often have you been bothered by having little interest or pleasure in doing things?

Q4 Which, if any, of the following statements are true for you? Please tick all that apply

Q5 How happy were you before the emergence of the pandemic, lock-down and isolation? Rate on a scale of 1 – 10

Q6 How has the Covid-19 pandemic impacted your mental health?

Q7 Take a moment to think about coming out of lockdown and returning to school/work. How do you think this will impact your mental health.

Q8 Please explain how the actions you used to protect yourself from Covid-19, such as social distancing, social isolation, or a lockdown, have impacted your mental health and/or your capacity to manage your everyday life.

Q9 Does the mental health condition of a person worsens if he or she gets infected with Covid-19?

Q10 Has your mental health become worse for any of the following reasons linked to social distancing or isolation or Covid-19?My mental health has been worse because…

Q11 Are you satisfied with the current situation? Does it feel to be good at home, studying and working? Or do you want to break the new normal and get back to the usual life before the pandemic? Rate on a scale of 1 – 10.

Q12 Which age group are you in?

Introduction- Background & Context

Covid-19 also known as Coronavirus is known to be a contagious disease caused by a virus called Coronavirus. The WHO (World Health Organization) first came to know about this new virus from the cases that had taken place in Wuhan, in China. In the due course of important research that was issued by AXA, 578 expats were interviewed through which it was determined that 39% of the expats believed that their mental health condition has worsened due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic (Farrell et al., 2020).

Before the break-out of the Covid-19 pandemic, it was determined that 62% of the expats had claimed that their mental health condition was good that in turn has reduced to 32% at the time of the pandemic (Farrell et al., 2020). The expats have been determined to be having a tough time as far as their mental health is taken into consideration. The key purpose of this research is to determine the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the mental health status of the expats.

The benefit of the research study is to explore the mental health issues among the expats during the pandemic and finding a solution to minimize these issues. This research aims to find out the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the mental health of expats.

Literature Review

The different risks, limitations, and quarantines associated with the Covid-19 pandemic have made the life of the expats complicated. Several international nomads have either deciding to go back to their homes or are at least thinking to go back to their homes (Lambert et al., 2021).

The WHO formally declared the break-out of the pandemic on 11th March 2020 and at that time few people had even anticipated the degree to which the world would transform and the speed at which the changes would take place.

Moreover, the Covid-19 pandemic was acting as a driver of change, increasing the speed of future work as well as the requirement to be ready for the next normal (Mello et al., 2021). The covid-19 pandemic had been known to have changed the reality of people in just one night.

At the time of this pandemic, several people are doing a remote-jobs, also known as work from home or teleworking. Even though the pandemic has created a huge impact both on the international as well as domestic employees, expatriates can be regarded as a specifically interesting topic to be studied (Ali et al., 2020), because the concept of a career, job satisfaction, or even adjustment procedures are considered to be different in the context of both these groups.

A global assignment might seem to be appealing and glamorous, but it also brings about significant personal challenges on the part of the employees and contributes towards making the time unstable for them.

In such a case it can be stated that both the personal well as professional life of the expatriates are influenced as a result of engagement in international assignments. At the time of the Covid-19 pandemic, many expatriates have been determined to be going through unmatched challenges over different regions across this world (Ali et al., 2020).

The expatriates face challenges as a result of a conflict in between their work-life as well as professional life that in turn is known to be a normal situation in modern society (Mello et al., 2021). This imbalance is known to have created an impact on all employees, not paying heed to the structure of their family, their socio-economic status, or even their demography.

In such a situation, several employees experience a complicated time in creating a healthy balance between their professional life and personal life (Mello et al., 2021), despite it being a great area of importance for them. As a result of a work-life conflict, the expatriates are highly susceptible to stress that creates an adverse impact on their wellbeing and also on their work performance as an individual.

The Covid-19 pandemic has contributed to a great extent towards disrupting the relationship of the expats with their homes. In this regard, research demonstrates that the standard of life can partially be considered as a component of an emotional relationship between a particular person and his environment.

This is known to have transformed drastically with the social distancing principles, closed restaurants as well as the inability to create plans for the future of different dimensions of a person’s life (Lambert et al., 2021). The concerned experience is not only associated with the expats, but it has caused an increased level of anxiety, stress, and loneliness among people across this world including the expats.

With limitations imposed on travelling and on socializing as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, there would be several expats who might be feeling isolated. Isolation can be considered to be a feeling that would further lead to the feeling of depression as well as anxiety.

As per the latest surveys, it has been determined that employers very frequently achieves failure to provide health assistance in case of their expat member of the workforce. Moreover, an organization gives more significance to the physical health of the employees as compared to their mental wellbeing.

Considering from an international point of view, the mental wellbeing of a person contributes to a great extent in terms of the pressure of disability at workplaces (Hashim et al., 2021).

This results in increasing the absence rate of the employees from their work as well as reduces the productivity of the organization as a whole. Furthermore, it has also been determined that the mental healthcare requirements have risen to a great extent in the current situation, however, access to mental healthcare services has been suspended in many countries.

This issue can be regarded to be critical as far as the Covid-19 pandemic is taken into consideration because it has the potential to create a huge and long-term impact on the young generation of the current time.

Additionally, the occurrence of anxiety or even depression among the expats is found to be greatest as compared to other mental health claims made that in turn would include dementia, bipolar, eating disorder, post-partum among few others. Anxiety, depression, and stress have been determined to be in the highest proportion among the expats that have been more exaggerated as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic (Hashim et al., 2021).

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Methodology / Phenomenology- Benefits

To determine the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the mental health of the expats, the qualitative research methodology of phenomenology would be used, through which the whole event that is the experience of the expats at the time of the pandemic would be studied as and when it is happening.

Moreover, the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the mental health of the expats would be studied from different angles, including the stress, anxiety, or even depression being experienced by those expats as a result of being away from their home for a prolonged period and due to the absence of socialization (Lambert et al., 2021).

As a part of this methodology, the researcher can interview the expats, watch videos demonstrating the expat’s experience, or even personally visit the expats requiring them to share their experience (Lambert et al., 2021).

The benefit of this research methodology is that it would help to gain an understanding of the significance of the experience that a particular expat was trying to communicate. Only realistic data is accumulated through this methodology, eliminating the chances of any artificial information (Lambert et al., 2021). Another big advantage is that the phenomenology research method is based on perceptions and experience and not on artificial information.

Sampling Strategy

In the context of this research, the quota sampling method would be used, wherein at the time of creating the study only, it would be determined that the people having a specific range of characteristics would be regarded as participants in the concerned study (Lambert et al., 2021). In the case of this study, the ex-pats living in the USA, Singapore and Europe having a significant impact on their mental health as a result of the pandemic would be taken into consideration.

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