Patients with COVID-19 are at increased risk of being diagnosed with mental health after infection, the study found – The Hill

A story at a glance


  • Researchers at Oregon State University used COVID-19 National Collaboration (N3C) data to compare 46,610 COVID-19 positive individuals with patients who developed other illnesses to measure how COVID-19 affected mental health outcomes. health.

  • The degree of psychiatric diagnosis is measured in two periods – 21 to 120 days after diagnosis COVID and from 120 days to one year after diagnosis.

  • The study is limited to patients without a previous history of mental illness and focuses particularly on anxiety and mood disorders.

According to a recent study, patients with COVID-19 are 25 percent more likely to develop a psychiatric disorder in the months after infection than those who have experienced other respiratory illnesses.

Researchers at Oregon State University used COVID-19 National Collaboration (N3C) data to compare 46,610 COVID-19 positive individuals with patients who developed other illnesses to measure how COVID-19 affected mental health outcomes. health.

The degree of psychiatric diagnosis is measured in two periods – 21 to 120 days after diagnosis COVID and from 120 days to one year after diagnosis. The study is limited to patients without a previous history of mental illness and focuses particularly on anxiety and mood disorders.

Patients diagnosed with COVID-19 had a 3.8 percent rate of developing a psychiatric disorder, compared with 3 percent of those with a different respiratory diagnosis, the researchers said.

“There can certainly be people who are struggling with new things like this and need that extra support or encouragement to seek help,” said Lauren Chan, Ph.D. a nutrition student at OSU’s College of Public Health and Human Sciences, a press release said.

“I don’t want to say that every person who gets COVID will have this type of problem, but if you start worrying about yourself or a family member, it’s not unheard of. You definitely need to take care of yourself or others around you. ”

Chan added that the increase in mental health diagnoses poses a threat to the health system, which is already seeing an increase in the need for psychiatric care.

“We have already had difficulty trying to identify a professional to work with, and we will continue to have difficulty providing people with the care they need,” she said.


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The latest study adds to the growing literature examining the link between COVID-19 and mental health, which has a profound effect on children and young adults.

A recent study by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, found that nearly half of young people in the United States had mental health symptoms in the middle of the second year of the pandemic.

However, the findings of the teams show a decline compared to the previous year. A study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 63% of young people had symptoms of depression or anxiety in June 2020.


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Published on June 8, 2022

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