Mental health biggest non-COVID-19 health issue after pandemic, physicians believe

Jan. 28, 2021

One year after the first COVID-19 case in the United States, 86 percent of doctors around the world believe that mental health issues and depression will be the biggest non-COVID-19 public health issue after the pandemic, according to a survey by Sermo as reported in a news release.

Other areas of concern for the coming year are an increase in violence (34 percent), increase in spousal or child abuse (27 percent), increase in suicides (26 percent) and an increase in opioid abuse (21 percent), said Sermo, a data collection and social media network for physicians.

Fielded Jan. 8, 2021-Jan. 13, 2021, the study, part of Sermo’s COVID-19 Real Time Barometer, included insights from 3,334 physicians across 24 countries.

The study also revealed that 53 percent of physicians believe the long-term side effects of COVID-19 will be the biggest COVID-related public health issue over the next year. In addition, almost two out of three respondents do not believe or are unsure whether the United States and the world will be able to return to normal after the vaccine is rolled out.

The survey also found that 63 percent believe the general public will need an annual vaccine to protect against COVID, while 64 percent said they are very concerned or concerned that a new COVID virus is on the horizon. Of those who participated in the survey, 53 percent believe the next pandemic will arrive in 5 or more years.

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