COVID-19 Mental Health Initiative is Launched at Annual Council

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Source: The Health Connection Newsletter | 4th Quarter 2020

Silver Spring, MD, USA | Inter-American Division (IAD)

António Guterres, the United Nations‘ (UN) Secretary-General, stated that the mental health of society has been severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic crisis and is a priority to be addressed urgently. He added that Mental health will remain a core concern even after the pandemic is over. In the US, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) stated that 41% study participants reported at least one adverse mental or behavioral health condition during the pandemic. “The increase in depression, anxiety, stress and trauma-related disorders, substance abuse and suicidal ideations is staggering” especially among 18-24 year-olds, with three in four reporting at least one adverse mental or behavioral health condition, and one in four reporting seriously having considered suicide in the past 30 days. In response to this great need, the General Conference launched a Mental Health initiative during the church’s Annual Council on October 8, 2021. The goal is to raise awareness, provide resources and call people to action to help reverse these statistics. Education, Family, Youth and Health Ministries came together with the goal of promoting the initiative and motivating people to become involved. More information is available in page 2 of this newsletter under resources.

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