Mental health

Researchers in NIHR’s research infrastructure, schools and units are running research studies to understand exactly how the pandemic and the associated control measures are affecting the mental health and wellbeing of the nation, as well as on how people who have experienced the disease might be affected.

How the outbreak affects mental health

A rapid evidence review by the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration West found that the prevalence of mental health conditions is likely to increase during, and immediately after, the COVID-19 outbreak.

The NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) is running two online surveys to measure the mental health and wellbeing of the population throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Repeated Assessment of Mental health in Pandemics (RAMP) study is examining the factors that may affect risk and resilience to mental health problems during the outbreak. The Coronavirus Outbreak Psychological Experiences (COPE) study aims to understand whether there are similarities and differences in the effect of the pandemic on people with and without lived experience of mental health problems.

The COVID-19 Supporting Parents, Adolescents, and Children in Epidemics (Co-SPACE) study, supported by NIHR Oxford Health BRC and NIHR Applied Research Collaboration Oxford and Thames Valley, is tracking children and young people’s mental health throughout the COVID-19 crisis to identify what advice, support and help can protect their mental health.

The NIHR Mental Health Translational Research Collaboration is collating an online register of COVID-19 mental health studies, to help coordinate and facilitate high-quality collaborative mental health research during the COVID-19 pandemic.

How infection impacts mental health

Researchers at the NIHR UCLH BRC have found that people taken ill by coronavirus infections may experience psychiatric problems - such as PTSD - while hospitalised and potentially after they recover. 

To combat this, researchers at the NIHR Oxford Health BRC have published new guidance and free resources for clinicians on helping COVID-19 patients cope with trauma after intensive care.

And the NIHR Greater Manchester Patient Safety and Translational Research Centre is undertaking a study that looks at the mental health of survivors of COVID-19, as well as the general population within Greater Manchester including those with lived experience of homelessness.