Qualitative Assessment of Challenges and Impact on Health and Wellbeing of Malaysian Firefighters


  • Nuramalina Samar Faculty of Human Development, Sultan Idris Education University, 35900 Tanjong Malim, Perak, MALAYSIA
  • Nurul Ain Hidayah Abas Faculty of Human Development, Sultan Idris Education University, 35900 Tanjong Malim, Perak, MALAYSIA
  • Nurul Ain Mohd Daud Faculty of Human Development, Sultan Idris Education University, 35900 Tanjong Malim, Perak, MALAYSIA
  • Asma Perveen Faculty of Human Development, Sultan Idris Education University, 35900 Tanjong Malim, Perak, MALAYSIA
  • Izazol Idris Faculty of Human Development, Sultan Idris Education University, 35900 Tanjong Malim, Perak, MALAYSIA
  • Mei-Hua Lin School of Medical and Life Sciences, Sunway University, 47500 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, MALAYSIA
  • Ramayah Thurasamy School of Management, Science University of Malaysia, 11700 Gelugor, Penang, MALAYSIA
  • Mohammad Aziz Shah Mohamed Arip Faculty of Human Development, Sultan Idris Education University, 35900 Tanjong Malim, Perak, MALAYSIA
  • Ahmad Faiz Tharima Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia, 71760 Nilai, Negeri Sembilan, MALAYSIA
  • Andy Alie Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia, 71760 Nilai, Negeri Sembilan, MALAYSIA
  • Nur Hafizah Mohammad Lukman Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia, 71760 Nilai, Negeri Sembilan, MALAYSIA




firefighters, emergency personnel, first responder, challenges, mental health, wellbeing


Operational response by firefighters necessitates a sudden shift from rest to near-maximal physical effort, as well as almost instant stress management due to the nature of work to be readily available attending emergencies. However, more is needed to know about the other challenges faced by firefighters and the impact of those challenges. The purpose of this study was to explore the challenges of Malaysian firefighters and the impact of the challenges. The study adopted a qualitative research method through semi-structured interviews with 23 firefighters in the central region of Malaysia, consisting of supervisors and subordinates. Responses to each question were qualitatively analyzed to determine themes. Results suggest that two superordinate themes emerged relating to workplace and personal challenges, further divided into themes and subthemes. The challenges impact the firefighters psychologically, further divided into mental, physiological, emotional, and behavioural and psychosocial impacts. Exploring challenges and their impact on firefighters provides a foundation and guidance for management, supervisors, or mental health providers in promoting the well-being of firefighters. This study discovered promising avenues for future research regarding challenges and impact on firefighters. It demonstrated that understanding the challenges and their impact is significant in identifying preventive measures among high-risk occupations to support their mental health. The result will eventually provide a better understanding of how to enhance the well-being of firefighters concerning their job descriptions.


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How to Cite

Samar, N., Abas, N. A. H. ., Mohd Daud, N. A. ., Perveen, A. ., Idris, I. ., Lin, M.-H., Thurasamy, R., Mohamed Arip, M. A. S., Tharima, A. F. ., Alie, A., & Mohammad Lukman, N. H. . (2023). Qualitative Assessment of Challenges and Impact on Health and Wellbeing of Malaysian Firefighters. Fitness, Performance and Health Journal, 2(1), 1–15. https://doi.org/10.53797/fphj.v2i1.1.2023