Importance of Mental Health Surveys During COVID-19 PandemicUpdated:
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is having an enormous impact on all the aspects of our lives, and it will have both short and long-lasting effects. Schools and universities are closed down, exams and events postponed, health care services are partially, or completely disrupted, we have to isolate ourselves from family and friends and some of us started to work remotely or even lost our jobs due to the pandemic. However, not everyone can cope with these changes happening so fast. Therefore, many people are facing mental health challenges. Fear about the future, stress, financial uncertainty, depression, and anxiety are some of the problems growing rapidly during the coronavirus pandemic.
Why mental health surveys are important during the COVID-19 pandemic?
Mental Health and Economic recovery
While all nonessential businesses are shutting down due to the pandemic there were millions of job losses in the U.S. However, essential businesses, which provide groceries, health or financial support, or utilities are still open and some people still have to go to work, even if they are afraid of catching the virus. Sadly not everyone has a choice.
These people are facing various mental health issues including uncertainty about the future, fear, anxiety, depression, and overall reduced quality of life. This leads to lost productivity and profits in the workplace.
Businesses need to ensure employee well-being and conducting employee mental health surveys is the first step to a more healthy and productive population. This will benefit both companies, people, and faster economic recovery.
Monitoring Behavioral Changes
Without a doubt, the coronavirus pandemic has created huge chaos in our lives, and our old definition of normal has changed forever. These changes have inevitably lead to a huge rise in mental health problems.
In a Health Tracking Poll many adults have reported difficulty sleeping (36%) or eating (32%), increases in alcohol consumption or substance use (12%), and worsening chronic conditions (12%), due to worry and stress over the coronavirus, social isolation, or job loss and income insecurity.
Mental health surveys give insight into the population’s well-being and help to track behavioral changes during the crisis. This data is crucial in reducing mental health problems and monitoring the progress we are making every day.
Communication with Authorities
Data gathered on conducting mental health surveys is essential for better communication with authorities. This data will help health care providers, government agencies, scientists, and researchers to understand more about mental issues caused by the pandemic. This will lead to more efficient and faster economic recovery.
As mentioned before, our mental well-being has a direct impact on our productivity and performance at work. That is why it is important to monitor the emotional state of every worker, especially during psychologically difficult times. Conducting mental health surveys will help tremendously to businesses, health care systems, and authorities to plan strategies to control COVID-19 and make plans for the future.
Eventually, schools and universities will reopen, and to move forward as efficiently as possible, student mental health screening will be essential. This will help in understanding the impact of the pandemic on children and young adults and what has to be done to support them.
Altogether, mental health surveying will benefit our society greatly, starting from the faster and more efficient economic recovery, ending to better well-being of the population.
Hard-to-Reach Populations and Mental health Surveying
It is crucial to not forget about the hard-to-reach populations with limited or no internet access. According to a Research Study, 10% of the U.S. population do not use the Internet. Interestingly, this is not because of the limited Internet access - according to the Federal Communications Commission, 99.99% of Americans have access to it. Hence, people have decided not to use the Interned on purpose. Reasons could be various such as old age, lifestyle, education level, location, or ethnicity.
Paper surveying is one of the options to conduct surveys on hard-to-reach populations. This data gathered on paper surveys could be vital in understanding how the coronavirus pandemic affects different societies and people groups.
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