The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on the psychological well-being of Quebecers. According to a new study conducted by the Université de Sherbrooke, one in four Montrealers has developed symptoms of "pandemic-induced" anxiety and depression.
More broadly, across seven of Quebec's health regions, one in five survey respondents reported similar symptoms of mental distress. The situation seems to be worse in urban areas.
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Levels of depression and anxiety that are considerably higher than what was observed pre-pandemic
Professor Mélissa Généreux, Université de Sherbrooke.
Some groups are "more affected" than others, the study says.
"In our study, 37% of adults aged 18 to 24 reported symptoms of anxiety or depression in the previous two weeks," explained Professor Mélissa Généreux.
She also said "Anglophones are twice as likely as Francophones to have anxiety or depressive symptoms."
The study's authors have put forward four recommendations, including deploying "specialized psychiatric teams," and improving frontline and community support services.
Un adulte sur 5 aurait eu des symptômes compatibles avec un trouble d’anxiété généralisée ou une dépression majeure… https://t.co/0oU0lafysr— Université de Sherbrooke (@Université de Sherbrooke) 1601401651.0
"We must recognize the extent of the psychosocial impacts of the pandemic in Quebec, which many are calling a 'second disaster,'" explained Professor Généreux.