Altruistic behavior, personal and psychological well-being of medical students during the COVID-19 pandemic in Kazakhstan


  • Aidos Bolatov University Medical Center
  • Altynay Askarova University Medical Center, Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan
  • Dilnoza Kakhkharova Kazakh-Russian Medical University, Almaty, Kazakhstan


altruistic behavior, medical students, COVID-19, psychological well-being, quality of life



Due to the dire situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, medical students from all over the world have been involved in the fight against the new virus. We aimed to study the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the medical students’ quality of life in the context of altruistic behavior.


In total, 437 medical students from Astana Medical University and Kazakh-Russian Medical University participated in a cross-sectional study. Altruistic behavior was assessed to what extent the participants showed certain acts of altruism. To evaluate the immediate psychological impact of COVID-19, we conducted an online survey, using the Fear of COVID-19 Scale, the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale, Personal Well-being Index (PWI), and Academic Motivation Scale.


Female students showed a lower level of PWI and a higher level of Fear of COVID-19. The prevalence of depression, anxiety, and stress was 14.4%, 18.1%, and 6.6%, respectively, and was correlated with Fear of COVID-19. Students with confirmed COVID-19, students with family members or friends with confirmed COVID-19, and students who lived with high-risk people had a high risk for low personal and psychological well-being. Altruistic behavior during the COVID-19 was associated with high PWI. Volunteering and providing medical care students demonstrated a higher level of personal and psychological well-being, and satisfaction with the profession. But, working in provisional hospitals was associated with symptoms of stress.


Despite the negative impact of the COVID-19, altruistic behavior had a positive impact on medical students ‘quality of life.