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Evaluation of fear and stress levels and methods of coping with stress among parents having children with chronic diseases during the COVID-19 pandemic.

PURPOSE: The aim of this study is to evaluate the fear and stress levels of parents having children with chronic disease and their methods to cope with stress during the COVID-19 pandemic.

DESIGN AND METHODS: This descriptive and correlation study was conducted with the participation of 390 parents with and without children suffering from chronic diseases. Fear of COVID-19 Scale (FCS), Parenting Stress Index (PSI-SF), and Coping Response Inventory (CRI) were used to collect data. In the data analysis, Kurtosis and Skewness coefficients were used to check the assumption of normal distribution, t-test was used to compare two independent groups and Pearson correlation analysis was used to make relational inferences.

RESULT: It was found that 84.9% (n = 331) of the parents were mothers and 15.1% (n = 59) were fathers. The FCS mean score of the parents having children with chronic diseases was 21.52 ± 5.07, their PSI-SF mean score was 68.27 ± 25.56, and their CRI mean score was 96.97 ± 15.12. For the parents having children without chronic diseases, the FCS mean score was 18.10 ± 5.80, the PSI-SF mean score was 68.75 ± 23.43, and the CRI mean score was 94.77 ± 15.08.

CONCLUSION: It was determined that parents having children with chronic diseases had higher levels of COVID-19 fear during the pandemic than parents having child without chronic diseases, but their stress levels and CRI mean scores were similar.

PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS: It is important for nurses to take into account the feelings of fear and stress experienced by parents due to the COVID-19 pandemic and provide coping methods.

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