Increased Need for Mental Health Support for College Students During COVID-19

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Even before the COVID-19 pandemic began, rising mental health problems in the United States had health advocates and providers worried about the need for additional support for struggling college students—and the ability of schools to provide it. The pandemic has only exacerbated this worry. COVID-19 risk mitigation measures, such as continued physical isolation, put students at greater risk of facing mental health impacts from the pandemic. Without proper support and resources for students with mental health needs, there are a range of potentially serious and lasting consequences, including more students dropping out of school, higher rates of substance abuse, and lower lifetime earning potential.

According to a recent nationwide survey of 502 college students enrolled at two-and-four-year institutions, an overwhelming majority (85 percent) of students said they have experienced increased stress and/or anxiety as a result of COVID-19. In a recent survey measuring psychological distress among adults in the United States, researchers from Johns Hopkins University found that 24 percent of young adults aged 18 to 29 reported serious psychological distress, compared to 4…


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