Recovery Update

Recovery Update features the most recent articles from throughout the field of psychiatric rehabilitation. Stay up to date on all the latest mental health news through this weekly newsletter.

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Recovery Update features the most recent articles from throughout the field of psychiatric rehabilitation. Stay up to date on all the latest mental health news through this weekly newsletter.

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Children and adolescents are likely to experience high rates of depression and anxiety long after current lockdown and social isolation ends and clinical services need to be prepared for a future spike in demand, according to the authors of a new rapid review into the long-term mental health effects of lockdown. The research, which draws on over 60 pre-existing, peer-reviewed studies into topics spanning isolation, loneliness and mental health for young people aged 4-21, is published today (Monday 1 June 2020) in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
People who believe more strongly that depression is biologically caused also tend to think it is more severe and long lasting, compared to those who see less of a role for biological causes, a new Rutgers study finds. At the same time, people who believe that biological factors cause depression also tend to be more optimistic that treatment will have a positive effect, said Sarah Mann, a former doctoral student at Rutgers University-New Brunswick who led the study.
Before Covid-19 arrived in the U.S., the country was in the midst of a mental illness crisis. Suicide rates in the United States rose 33% between 1999 and 2017. In 2018, 1.7 million people had an opioid use disorder. Now a deadly virus and the resulting isolation and economic hardship threaten to exacerbate the crisis. As suicide, opioid use disorder, and other mental health issues were playing out, the country’s capacity to help wasn’t up to the task.
There are a number of factors at play that could position some restaurant chains more favorably than others in a post-pandemic world. No doubt, those with a strong off-premise presence will keep their momentum. Those with strong liquidity will have an advantage over those that have taken on significant debt to weather the storm. Those that prioritized safety and benevolence and made sure their customers were taken care of will win over diners.
Health care providers that primarily treat the poor, children and people with disabilities are getting left out of the COVID-19 aid being issued by the Trump administration, frustrating advocates who worry about the future of the Medicaid safety net. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has provided $72 billion to help hospitals and clinics stay afloat during the pandemic, but Medicaid providers — including mental health and substance use clinics, disability care providers and children's doctors — have seen very little of that money.
"Any time the doorbell rings, he runs inside and hides," a parent recently shared with me when talking about how difficult the coronavirus pandemic has been for her 5-year-old child. "I think I have pleuritis," a 10-year-old told me last month. "It hurts when I breathe in deep." "Really? What else have you read?" I asked. "Well, if it's not pleuritis, it could be anxiety. If it's not pleuritis or anxiety, this could be bad," he declared.
Experts are warning that the United States is ill prepared for a coming mental health crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic, which has killed more than 100,000 people in the nation and caused millions to lose their jobs. Barriers to mental health care existed before the pandemic, but those challenges are being exacerbated now as millions report feelings of stress, depression and isolation.
The coronavirus pandemic has taken a toll on the American psyche, with a third of Americans now showing signs of clinical depression or anxiety, a rate twice as high as before the pandemic, according to Census Bureau data. Those grim statistics are likely even more dire for the health care workers on the front lines of the crisis, experts say.
State of Colorado officials were optimistic they would be paying millions less in fines this year for violating the civil rights of inmates who are awaiting mental health evaluations. Then, COVID-19 changed everything. The state has been ordered to pay up to $10 million in fines annually as part of a legal judgment that found the state is taking too long to evaluate criminal defendants to determine if they are mentally stable enough to stand trial, and is also taking too long to provide treatment to those who are deemed incompetent to stand trial.
By the end of January, AMA member Kenneth Fuller, MD, a psychiatrist in Thomasville, Georgia, felt a sudden, vague sense of alarm about the spread of coronavirus. As COVID-19 saw human-to-human transmission in February, Dr. Fuller boarded a plane to a psychiatric conference as the disease seemed distant. However, after the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic on March 11, he thought, "Get ready, coronavirus may affect my area, my state or my patients."
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How are Americans coping with the crushing realities of the pandemic and the economic crisis forming in its wake? Not well, according to a new survey from the Census Bureau and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Nationally, around a third of Americans have reported recent symptoms of anxiety and depression since late April. For comparison, in the first three months of 2019, just 11 percent of Americans reported these symptoms on a similar survey.