The profound disruptions to daily life brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, including movement restrictions, lack of physical contact, economic anxieties and uncertainty about the future, are leading to an unprecedented rise in rates of depression, anxiety, substance use and suicide, in addition to disruption of existing mental health infrastructure. These consequences will outlive the immediate physical danger brought about by COVID-19 and need to be systematically addressed. While this crisis is deeply concerning, it has also instigated a massive, immediate shift in regulatory structures and treatment options for mental health, creating opportunities for innovative, scalable solutions that transcend borders and economic sectors.
The Global Future Council on Mental Health will leverage this changing landscape to consider how novel public-private initiatives can be highlighted and promoted to address the current crisis and bring about a shift in mental health treatment that will outlast the pandemic.