People with serious mental illness may be more at risk of severe illness from COVID-19
From: Treatment Advocacy Center Research Weekly
Risk of severe illness from COVID-19 among people with serious mental illness
As the Treatment Advocacy Center wrote in a blog in March when the coronavirus pandemic was first sweeping across the United States, people with serious mental illness may be more at risk of severe illness from COVID-19 due to their high prevalence of comorbid chronic medical conditions. Eight months later and now that we know more about COVID-19 and its impacts, researchers have confirmed this population has significantly increased risk of experiencing a severe illness from COVID-19.
Published in Psychiatric Services earlier this month, the study authors analyzed data from the National Survey of Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) and found a higher prevalence of many of the chronic medical conditions that are associated with severe illness from COVID-19 infection. People with serious mental illness have a higher prevalence of these conditions compared to individuals without serious mental illness, including asthma (19%), bronchitis (11%), nicotine dependence (21%), obesity (46%), hypertension (24%), heart disease (13%) and diabetes (12%).
Novak, P., et al (2020, November). Health conditions associated with severe illness from COVID-19 among individuals with serious mental illness. Psychiatric Services.