Emerging Mental Health Issues from the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic

Journal of Health and Medical Sciences

ISSN 2622-7258

Published: 16 April 2020

Emerging Mental Health Issues from the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic

Jeavana Sritharan, Ashvinie Sritharan

Ontario Tech University, Metrics Vocational Inc., ASKRehab

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10.31014/aior.1994.03.02.109

Pages: 157-162

Keywords: Coronavirus, COVID-19, Mental Health, Pandemic, Psychological Distress

Abstract

The unprecedented widespread pandemic of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has continued to have a tremendous impact on nations around the world. Government controls and restrictions were put in place and are currently being updated to increase social isolation and social (physical) distancing to slow the spread of the virus. As a result, it is expected that there will be unparalleled psychological distress impacting individuals at a global level. Given that the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to continue for the coming months with the possibility of multiple waves, it is imperative to understand the magnitude of mental health issues that will arise during and after this public health crisis. A review of existing literature was assessed to understand the mental health issues that emerge during a pandemic. MEDLINE, Pubmed, APA PsycInfo & CINAHL Plus were reviewed to identify articles published from 2000 to 2020. Of the 203 unique articles reviewed, 16 articles were included in this study. From these articles, important mental health themes identified were related to social isolation, social (physical) distancing, quarantine, caregiver stress, unemployment, and death/illness. The impact on frontline workers and those suffering from mental health disorders are also important factors during this pandemic. These themes provide important areas for mental health strategies and policies which will ultimately impact the burden of mental health in the months to come.

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