The COVID 19 pandemic has affected lives, families, and communities globally, and the mental health impact of the pandemic is expected to be huge. The economic downturn, social distancing measures, unemployment and uncertainty increase the mental health burden at the individual and community level.
The secretary-general of the United Nations mentioned the need for urgent action to address the mental health needs in the post-COVID-19 period to reduce the long-term effects of the pandemic.
In the Sri Lankan context, there are limited studies done to see the mental health effects of COVID-19, but it is expected to increase mental health problems, substance abuse, and suicides following the pandemic. Therefore, it is essential to take collective action to address the mental health needs in the post-COVID-19 atmosphere around the country.
We invite policymakers, state officials, professionals, the corporate sector, educators, law enforcement authorities, community organizations and the general public to join hands to ensure everyone everywhere has someone to turn to when their mental health is in crisis.