Bishop’s part of a research team studying mental health effects of COVID-19 and children

Record Staff
Bishop’s part of a research team studying mental health effects of COVID-19 and children

Dr. Catherine Malboeuf-Hurtubise, of Bishop’s University’s Psychology department, is joining forces with Dr. Chantal Camden, from the l’Université de Sherbrooke’s Medicine and Health Sciences department to establish a scientific basis aiming to guide mental health interventions to support children in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dr. Camden and Dr. Malboeuf-Hurtubise were awarded funds by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research’s (CIHR) COVID-19 Mental Health Initiative to consolidate and synthesize the evidence base on which public mental health responses to the COVID-19 pandemic and the identification of relevant interventions will be made. There are currently knowledge gaps that the two childhood specialists will attempt to fill by synthesizing the available literature on the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on children’s mental health.
Dr. Camden and Dr. Malboeuf-Hurtubise will lead a multidisciplinary and multi- institution team in which McGill University, Université de Montréal, and Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières will also take part.
The research will focus on the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on the mental health of children between five and 12 years old, with particular attention to children living with a handicap or chronic disease, in order to identify the best intervention strategies for them. Preliminary information suggests those children are more at risk of suffering from the lack of social interactions and disruption to daily routines that have emerged because of confinement measures in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. They are therefore more likely to suffer from anxiety or other mental health conditions.
“The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on children’s mental health is a concern,” commented Dr. Malboeuf-Hurtubise in a press release, pointing out the importance of documenting the impact of COVID-19 on children’s mental health. “This knowledge will then allow us to formulate science-based specific recommendations to diminish negative consequences of the current crisis on the mental health of our youth,” the doctor stated.

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