COVID-19- Its Relationship to Mental Health

One of five adults in America experiences a mental illness. Nearly one in twenty five adults in America lives with a serious mental illness (SMI). With the coronavirus permeating across this nation those numbers are growing. Nearly half of Americans report that the coronavirus is affecting their mental health. A federal disaster hotline for people in crisis received about 20 thousand texts in April compared with 1,790 during the same time last year.

A Kaiser Family Foundation poll finds that a majority of adults, 56%, report that worry or stress due to the pandemic has affected their mental health and well-being. Dr. John Draper, the Director of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline says the Disaster Distress Helpline, which is administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, has seen a massive uptick in calls in recent weeks. The Director of the National Institute for Mental Health, Dr. Joshua Gordon, says it is abundantly clear that people will be significantly affected by the pandemic. Gordon says frontline responders who witness death and morbidity and those with pre existing mental health conditions are among the leading groups susceptible to mental health complications.

Time magazine is publishing an article entitled Could COVID-19 Finally Destigmatize Mental Illness? We have previously reported in the Associated Billing Center, LLC Newsletter that some patients feel less stigmatized about seeking counseling through Teletherapy. The past decade has seen an increased public discussion about the role Stigma plays in mental health. Fortunately, evidence indicates that growing segments of the population realize the benefits of counseling.

Source: Gary R’nel

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