Mental Health During Pandemic

Angie SzumlinskiHealth, Studies

As the COVID-19 pandemic persists into late 2020, findings from the new NSHAP-COVID Study show that many older adults are resuming in-person interactions. Older adults who are known to be at higher risk for COVID-19 would be expected to be particularly careful about potential exposure to the virus. Yet the data show that 53% of older adults report no change in their frequency of in-person contact with family not living with them compared to before the pandemic.

The NSHAP-COVID Study – an extension of the national Social Life, Health and Aging Project (NSHAP) conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago, surveyed community-dwelling adults who are part of the NSHAP panel in fall 2020. Preliminary results from the first 1,284 respondents (interviewed from September 14 to October 26, 2020) aged 55-99 are presented and compared to data collected from the same respondents in 2015-16.

The study, although based on community elders, not nursing home residents, is interesting as the statistics are quite different than those of residents living in post-acute care. Maybe because the community-based senior isn’t adhering to isolation recommendations? Whatever the reason, the study is worth the read! Stay the course, stay well, get vaccinated and stay tuned!