This brief, Psychosis and COVID-19: Communities in Need Across the U.S., is the final brief in MHA’s four-part series and evaluates the MHA Screening data from individuals seeking support for psychotic-like experiences in the U.S. in 2020-2021.
While the risk of contracting COVID-19 is a traumatizing event, it was coupled with traumatic changes to people’s social environments as well, including financial hardship, housing and food insecurity, death of loved ones, dramatic changes to work and schooling environments, and increased stress in the household which may have led to increases in interpersonal violence. During this time, the U.S. also experienced increasingly visible race-based violence, including the killing of Black and Asian community members. Each of these experiences alone can cause an acute stress response, and for many individuals in the U.S., these experiences compounded one another.
This report uses the data from MHA Screening to identify states and counties in the U.S. with the greatest need for additional resources, where early intervention and increased awareness could support people at increased risk of psychosis during COVID-19. This report also includes recommendations for federal, state, and local strategies to better support individuals struggling with psychosis, severe depression, suicidal ideation, and trauma, using the MHA Screening data.