Individuals with mental health disorders are at greater risk to be hospitalized for COVID-19, as well as more likely to die from it. In response to this crisis, the EPINET website has posted a valuable FAQ on the facts about vaccination, a key tool in safeguarding public health, for this vulnerable population: How Do I Decide Whether to Get the COVID-19 Vaccine? (PDF). The FAQ addresses the vaccine development process, concerns over vaccine side effects, impact on symptoms or effect on medications individuals are already taking, and more. It is available in English, Spanish, and Portuguese.
EPINET (the Early Psychosis Intervention Network), sponsored by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), is a national learning health care system for early psychosis. It links early psychosis clinics through standard clinical measures, uniform data collection methods, data-sharing agreements, and integration of client-level data across service users and clinics.
“Westat, as the EPINET National Coordinating Center, is working with Regional Scientific Hubs to provide 101 Coordinated Specialty Care clinics nationwide with relevant and useful information,” notes Abram Rosenblatt, Ph.D., a Westat Vice President for Behavioral Health and Health Policy. “Although the COVID-19 vaccine FAQ was created for Coordinated Specialty Care and first episode psychosis, it is relevant for other types of mental health services and populations.”
- COVID-19 Prevalence and Mortality Among Schizophrenia Patients: A Large-Scale Retrospective Cohort Study
- A matter of priority: COVID-19 vaccination and mental health
- Increased risk of COVID-19 infection and mortality in people with mental disorders: Analysis from electronic health records in the United States