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Forgotten? Mental health care and treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic
New research published by SAMH is exposing the devastating impact of the pandemic on people with mental health problems, as Scotland marks 1 year since the first lockdown.
People with mental health problems have seen their wellbeing and access to support deteriorate, due to the significant and continued challenges they’ve faced throughout the pandemic.
The latest research report by Scotland’s mental health charity reveals how people with mental health problems and the services designed to support them have been affected since the country first saw coronavirus restrictions come into force on 23 March 2020.
The experiences of over 1,000 people with existing mental health problems were gathered through three surveys and a series of 15 in-depth interviews from across Scotland between August and December.
Over half (56%) of participants in SAMH's final survey in November felt their mental health had worsened recently, compared with the start of the pandemic.
Yet they could not rely on getting the support required: While the majority (64%) of participants tried to speak to their GP about their mental health during the pandemic, 1 in 10 (13%) were unsuccessful. And over a quarter (27%) of respondents to the final survey said their specialist treatment or care had stopped entirely because of the pandemic.