Exploring Nursing Staff's Experiences and Perspectives of COVID-19 Lockdown in a Residential Aged Care Setting in Australia

J Gerontol Nurs. 2023 Mar;49(3):34-39. doi: 10.3928/00989134-20230210-01. Epub 2023 Mar 1.


An exploratory qualitative study was performed to evaluate the experiences of nursing staff (N = 10) working in a residential aged care facility (RACF) during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic lockdown. Semi-structured, in-person interviews were performed, and thematic analysis was used to analyze the data. Care staff had little or no knowledge of how to cope with a lockdown necessitated by a pandemic. However, management developed proactive plans as they aligned with the changing care circumstances and ongoing government directives. Five major themes were identified: Prolonged Use and Shortage of Personal Protective Equipment; "Blind Leading the Blind"; Communication and Teamwork; Lack of Education; and Resident Response. RACF staff described working under stressful conditions during the initial COVID-19 pandemic lockdown; yet with experience, care staff and the management team adapted to pandemic requirements to meet the needs of residents in their care. RACFs should be prepared for the impact of pandemics on staff and ensure care resources and support are available for the continuity of safe and quality care of residents. [Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 49(3), 34-39.].

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Australia
  • COVID-19*
  • Communicable Disease Control
  • Humans
  • Nursing Staff*
  • Pandemics