Distress and resilience in the days of COVID-19: Comparing two ethnicities

Shaul Kimhi, Yohanan Eshel, Hadas Marciano, Bruria Adini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The COVID-19 pandemic is an ongoing epidemic of coronavirus disease, caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome, which has spread recently worldwide. Efforts to prevent the virus from spreading include travel restrictions, lockdowns as well as national or regional quarantines throughout the international community. The major negative psychological outcome of the COVID-19 pandemic is the anxiety caused by it. The aim of the present study was to examine the level of concern and the contributions of modes of resilience, well-being and demographic attributes towards decreasing or enhancing anxiety and depression among two samples: Israeli Jews (majority group) and Israeli Arabs (minority group). These random samples included 605 Jews and 156 Arabs who participated in an internet survey. A previous study, which has been conducted in the context of terror attacks, has shown that compared to Israeli Jews, Israeli Arabs expressed a higher level of fear of war and lower levels of resilience supporting personality attributes. The results of the current study indicated a similar pattern that emerged in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic: the Israeli Arabs reported a higher level of distress and a lower level of resilience and well-being.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3956
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number11
StatePublished - 3 Jun 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • COVID-19
  • Community and national resilience
  • Distress symptoms
  • Individual
  • Minority and majority groups
  • Sense of danger

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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