Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021 Apr 22;18(9):4440. doi: 10.3390/ijerph18094440.
The potential consequences of the COVID-19 outbreak are multifarious and remain largely unknown. Deaths as a direct result of the condition are already in the millions, and the number of indirect deaths is likely to be even higher. Pre-existing historical inequalities are compounded by the virus, driving increased rates of infection and deaths amongst people who use drugs and alcohol, those belonging to racial-ethnic minority groups, poorer communities, LBGTQ+ populations, healthcare workers, and other members of the care economy; all of whom are already at increased risk of adverse mental health effects. In this paper we suggest that a central role of mental health practitioners is advocacy: both for people who use psychiatric services and for those who, due to the effects of the pandemic, are at an increased risk of needing to do so.