13 Aug 2020

Mind Hong Kong launches new mental health initiatives in response to COVID-19  

Hong Kong has seen an increase in the demand for mental health care, given COVID-19 and subsequent social and economic impacts. To support those most in need and affected by COVID-19, Mind HK has launched additional mental health initiatives with the support of Goldman Sachs Gives. These initiatives include a Mental Health Relief Scheme – Mind HK will assist persons that have been greatly impacted by the pandemic through short-term pro bono 1:1 online sessions, Help Me – Mind HK’s new AI virtual mental health assistant, and COVID-19 Mental Health Education Resources – material to assist people with a healthy transition to the ‘new normal’

The initiatives are in response to the declining trend of mental wellbeing in Hong Kong caused by the pandemic. Mind HK conducted an online survey and commissioned Hong Kong Public Opinion Research Institute (HKPORI) to conduct a phone survey with 1000+ respondents in May 2020 to determine how levels of wellbeing changed during the rise of COVID-19 in Hong Kong (from January to May). The phone survey found that 43% of people reported that their mental health had worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic. In the online survey, almost half of respondents (49%) reported feeling lonely, which impacted their mental health and wellbeing. The safety issue due to the pandemic was the main barrier for seeking mental health support, with 21% of those with personal experience of mental health problems reporting this as a difficulty in accessing mental health support or treatment.

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