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The Effects of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Outbreak on Academic Staff Members: A Case Study of a Pharmacy School in Saudi Arabia

Authors Almaghaslah D, Alsayari A

Received 7 May 2020

Accepted for publication 25 June 2020

Published 15 July 2020 Volume 2020:13 Pages 795—802

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/RMHP.S260918

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Professor Marco Carotenuto


Dalia Almaghaslah,1 Abdulrhman Alsayari2

1Department of Clinical Pharmacy, College of Pharmacy, King Khalid University, Abha, Saudi Arabia; 2Department of Pharmacognosy, College of Pharmacy, King Khalid University, Abha, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence: Dalia Almaghaslah
College of Pharmacy, King Khalid University, PO Box 1882, Abha 61441, Saudi Arabia
Email damoazle@kku.edu.sa

Background: The 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has required governments to implement preventive policies to control the spread of the virus. Temporarily closing schools and other educational institutions has been adopted in many countries, including Saudi Arabia. This study aimed to assess academic staff satisfaction with suspending face-to-face teaching and turning to web-based education. Additionally, this study assessed how the suspension of face-to-face classes has affected the administrative work, research, and community at the College of Pharmacy, King Khalid University.
Methods: This study used a cross-sectional, self-administered, anonymous online questionnaire. A total of 59 academic staff were included.
Results: More than half the participants (55.9%) agreed or strongly agreed that the sudden shift to online education was done smoothly, more than half (57.6%) agreed or strongly agreed that virtual lectures were more flexible than face-to-face lectures, and a majority (79.7%) agreed or strongly agreed that the technology used for online education was reliable. A minority of participants agreed or strongly agreed that research (20.4%), community service (11.4%), and participation in scientific meetings (15.2%) had not been affected by the suspension.
Conclusion: Suspending classes without stopping education has been implemented effectively, and administrative work has continued to run smoothly. However, research, community service, and attending scientific meetings have been negatively impacted by the suspension.

Keywords: COVID-19, pharmacy education, academic staff members, Saudi Arabia, King Khalid University

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