Mental illness linked to severe cases of COVID-19: CDC

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AAn individual is at greater risk of developing a severe case of COVID-19 if they suffer from mental health issues, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In an Oct. 14 report, the CDC said that “mental health issues,” such as mood disorders or schizophrenia, increase an individual’s chances of needing a ventilator, be hospitalized or die from the disease.

People with severe mental disorders are at a higher risk of developing a severe case of coronavirus, according to a report that cites two studies. However, it is not known how these mental health issues affect the severity of the disease.

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Patients with schizophrenia are at greater risk of dying from COVID-19, according to a January study from the Journal of the American Medical Association. Another study from the same group showed that people with mood disorders have a “significantly higher probability” of being hospitalized and dying from COVID-19.

Mental health care workers have called on the CDC to include mental illness in the conditions that make an individual susceptible to severe cases of COVID-19, FOX23 reported.

Sixteen groups sent a letter to CDC director Rochelle Walensky, calling for an “immediate and urgent response” to include mental health on the organization’s list.

“Our organizations hope that the CDC will take this opportunity to demonstrate that people with these conditions are not invisible and deserve the consideration given to those living with other conditions properly identified on the CDC’s list,” it reads. the letter.

The CDC’s inclusion of mental health disorders on the list is key to highlighting the link between mental health and physical health, said Miriam Delphin-Rittmon, assistant secretary for mental health and addiction at the Department of Health. and Social Services.

“The recent inclusion by the CDC of certain mental health issues that may contribute to the severity of a COVID-19 infection strengthens the plight of Americans with behavioral health issues, including disorders related to the use of substances, ”said Delphin-Rittmon.

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About 20 million people in the United States are diagnosed with mood disorders, with more than 2.6 million adults with schizophrenia, according to the report.


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