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  • Ann Tucker

US ill-prepared for coronavirus-fueled mental health crisis

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 problem is expected to get worse in the coming months as people begin to reckon with the emotional impacts of the pandemic, and experts say there may not be enough resources to help them.

“The mental health aspect of this will come later and it won’t be as visible. You’re not going to be on a ventilator in a mental health center,” said Chuck Ingoglia, president and CEO of the National Council for Behavioral Health, which represents more than 3,300 mental health and addiction treatment providers.

“We still underinvest in mental health, and these crises have just exacerbated that disparity,” he said. 

Four in 10 adults said in a recent Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) poll that worry and stress related to the coronavirus has had a negative impact on their mental health. Read more

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