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Mental Health, Opioid Abuse Among Physicians’ Top Concerns Post-Pandemic

January 26, 2021

A survey of physicians in 24 nations that was released on Tuesday morning showed that 86% believe mental health issues and depression, along with an increase in opioid abuse, will be among the top non-COVID-19 public health issues after the pandemic. Mental health/depression was the No. 1 response and increased opioid abuse ranked fifth at 21%, behind violence (34%), increased spousal/child abuse (27%) and increases in suicide (26%).

The survey was conducted by Servo, a physician-only social platform, and included responses from 3,334 physicians in 24 countries. Responses were collected Jan. 8-13.

Survey participants expressed concern about several other factors:

  • Nearly two-thirds said they doubt or are unsure “whether the U.S. and the world will be able to return to normal after the vaccine is rolled out.”
  • 63% believe the general public will require an annual COVID vaccine.
  • 64% are concerned a new COVID virus is on the horizon.

Respondents were unified in several observations from the pandemic, namely that the healthcare system requires a more coordinated approach at federal and global levels, cost-cutting has left healthcare systems more easily susceptible to health crises, and that there is a significant need for public education on hygiene, prevention and vaccines “without devolving in the political turmoil.”

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