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1.
BMJ Open ; 11(9): e052339, 2021 09 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1406662

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Improving the mental health of young people is a global public health priority. In Latin America, young people living in deprived urban areas face various risk factors for mental distress. However, most either do not develop mental distress in the form of depression and anxiety, or recover within a year without treatment from mental health services. This research programme seeks to identify the personal and social resources that help young people to prevent and recover from mental distress. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: A cross-sectional study will compare personal and social resources used by 1020 young people (aged 15-16 and 20-24 years) with symptoms of depression and/or anxiety and 1020 without. A longitudinal cohort study will follow-up young people with mental distress after 6 months and 1 year and compare resource use in those who do and do not recover. An experience sampling method study will intensively assess activities, experiences and mental distress in subgroups over short time periods. Finally, we will develop case studies highlighting existing initiatives that effectively support young people to prevent and recover from mental distress. The analysis will assess differences between young people with and without distress at baseline using t-tests and χ2 tests. Within the groups with mental distress, multivariate logistic regression analyses using a random effects model will assess the relationship between predictor variables and recovery. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Ethics approvals are received from Ethics Committee in Biomedical Research, Faculty of Medicine, University of Buenos Aires; Faculty of Medicine-Research and Ethics Committee of the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Bogotá; Institutional Ethics Committee of Research of the Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia and Queen Mary Ethics of Research Committee. Dissemination will include arts-based methods and target different audiences such as national stakeholders, researchers from different disciplines and the general public. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ISRCTN72241383.


Subject(s)
Longitudinal Studies , Adolescent , Cohort Studies , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Latin America , Prospective Studies
2.
J Epidemiol Community Health ; 2021 Apr 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1209000

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has created a period of global economic uncertainty. Financial strain, personal debt, recent job loss and housing insecurity are important risk factors for the mental health of working-age adults. Community interventions have the potential to attenuate the mental health impact of these stressors. We examined the effectiveness of community interventions for protecting and promoting the mental health of working-age adults in high-income countries during periods of financial insecurity. METHODS: Eight electronic databases were systematically screened for experimental and observational studies published since 2000 measuring the effectiveness of community interventions on mental health outcomes. We included any non-clinical intervention that aimed to address the financial, employment, food or housing insecurity of participants. A review protocol was registered on the PROSPERO database (CRD42019156364) and results are reported in accordance with Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines. RESULTS: From 2326 studies screened, 15 met our inclusion criteria. Five categories of community intervention were identified: advice services colocated in healthcare settings; link worker social prescribing; telephone debt advice; food insecurity interventions; and active labour market programmes. In general, the evidence for effective and cost-effective community interventions delivered to individuals experiencing financial insecurity was lacking. From the small number of studies without a high risk of bias, there was some evidence that financial insecurity and associated mental health problems were amenable to change and differences by subpopulations were observed. CONCLUSION: There is a need for well-controlled studies and trials to better understand effective ingredients and to identify those interventions warranting wider implementation.

3.
ProQuest Central; 2020.
Preprint in English | ProQuest Central | ID: ppcovidwho-2112

ABSTRACT

We argue that predictions of a ‘tsunami’ of mental health problems as a consequence of the pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and the lockdown are overstated;feelings of anxiety and sadness are entirely normal reactions to difficult circumstances, not symptoms of poor mental health. Some people will need specialised mental health support, especially those already leading tough lives;we need immediate reversal of years of underfunding of community mental health services. However, the disproportionate effects of COVID-19 on the most disadvantaged, especially BAME people placed at risk by their social and economic conditions, were entirely predictable. Mental health is best ensured by urgently rebuilding the social and economic supports stripped away over the last decade. Governments must pumfunds into local authorities to rebuild community services, peer support, mutual aid and local community and voluntary sector organisations. Health care organisations must tackle racism and discrimination to ensure genuine equal access to universal health care. Government must replace highly conditional benefit systems by something like a universal basic income. All economic and social policies must be subjected to a legally binding mental health audit. This may sound unfeasibly expensive, but the social and economic costs, not to mention the costs in personal and community suffering, though often invisible, are far greater.

4.
Wellcome Open Res ; 5: 166, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-657527

ABSTRACT

We argue that predictions of a 'tsunami' of mental health problems as a consequence of the pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and the lockdown are overstated; feelings of anxiety and sadness are entirely normal reactions to difficult circumstances, not symptoms of poor mental health.  Some people will need specialised mental health support, especially those already leading tough lives; we need immediate reversal of years of underfunding of community mental health services.  However, the disproportionate effects of COVID-19 on the most disadvantaged, especially BAME people placed at risk by their social and economic conditions, were entirely predictable. Mental health is best ensured by urgently rebuilding the social and economic supports stripped away over the last decade. Governments must pump funds into local authorities to rebuild community services, peer support, mutual aid and local community and voluntary sector organisations.  Health care organisations must tackle racism and discrimination to ensure genuine equal access to universal health care.  Government must replace highly conditional benefit systems by something like a universal basic income. All economic and social policies must be subjected to a legally binding mental health audit. This may sound unfeasibly expensive, but the social and economic costs, not to mention the costs in personal and community suffering, though often invisible, are far greater.

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