Grief after Pandemic Loss: Factors Affecting Grief Experiences (the CO-LIVE Study) (#236876363)

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It has been suggested that grief after losing a significant other person during the COVID-19 pandemic is more severe than before the pandemic. However, little is known about the factors associated with COVID-19-related grief. This study aims to examine whether grief among relatives of people who died during the first COVID-19 wave was associated with factors such as (in)sufficient opportunity to be with the dying person, relatives’ appreciation of how the person died, and “unfinished business” between the bereaved and the deceased. The study involved 200 Dutch relatives who had lost a person during the pandemic. Grief was measured with the Hogan Despair subscale. Data were analyzed using correlations and multivariable regression analysis. Our findings revealed that two-thirds of bereaved relatives reported that they had not had sufficient opportunity to be with the dying person in the final days. However, this experience was not significantly correlated with despair. A negative appreciation of the dying process and remaining unfulfilled wishes as part of “unfinished business” between the dying person and their relative were associated with higher levels of despair, particularly among partners. It is crucial to ensure that relatives can experience good end-of-life care for their dying loved one and be enabled to resolve family issues, to mitigate the impact of the pandemic.




Becqué, Y. N., Witkamp, E., Goossensen, A., Korfage, I. J., van Lent, L. G. G., Pasman, H. R., … van der Heide, A. (2023). Grief after Pandemic Loss: Factors Affecting Grief Experiences (the CO-LIVE Study) (#236876363). Journal of Loss and Trauma.

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