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New CHCF polling shows COVID-19 mental health impact

As part of our new “Rising to Meet the Moment” COVID-19 interview series, we talked to Catherine Teare of the California Health Care Foundation about their COVID-19 tracking poll.

Teare leads the Foundation’s work on behavioral health and shared her key takeaways from their ongoing tracking poll.

Key quote: “That stress is going to continue to grow and I know health care providers, mental health providers in particular, anticipate their own form of surge. We’ve talked about surge in the hospital setting, I think it’s fair to expect that we will see a surge of people needing a whole range of mental health and substance use disorder services from crisis intervention, just somebody to talk to, to people needing more long-term treatment.”

More: “We’re going to see a surge in the need and I think there’s a lot of efforts around the state from the Governor’s office on down to local areas to figure out how to meet that.” 

A sliver lining? Teare sees potential opportunity for expanding virtual mental health care services but adds that California was already facing a behavioral health crisis before the current increase in need.

Key stats, via their tracking poll results released today:

  • 27% of Californians say their mental health has “gotten worse” since last week
  • Twice as many women report worsening mental health versus men
  • Majorities of all groups report their mental health as unchanged from the prior week

Want to participate in this interview series? If you or someone you know has a unique perspective, let us know by sending an email to [email protected].

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