People with mental problems 5 times more likely to die from COVID-19

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In a new study from the University of Manchester, researchers found people with psychotic disorders, such as schizophrenia, are five times more likely to die from COVID-19 and three times more likely to be hospitalized.

People with psychotic disorders showed 4.84 times higher odds of dying from COVID-19, compared to those without severe mental illness.

The odds of dying from COVID-19 were 3.76 higher in people with bipolar disorder and 1.99 higher in people with major depressive disorder.

Among people with COVID-19, those with psychotic or bipolar disorders had the highest rates of infection leading to hospitalization: 35.8% and 37.3% respectively, compared to 16.6% among those without severe mental illness.

And among people with COVID-19 who were hospitalized, over half of those with psychotic disorders—52.6%—did not survive compared to 37.5% among those without severe mental illness.

The study was conducted in the UK Biobank, which includes blood samples, heart and brain scans and genetic data of the 500,000 volunteer participants.

Of the individuals included in this study, 1,925 had a recorded history of schizophrenia or other psychotic disorders in their lifetime, 1,483 had bipolar disorder and 41,448 had a major depressive disorder.

A total of 16,282 people tested positive for COVID-19, while 2,885 were hospitalized and 1,081 died.

The team says the higher rates of adverse COVID-19 outcomes among people with severe mental illness were partly linked to a range of factors including being male, belonging to an ethnic minority, older age, and having certain respiratory and metabolic conditions.

The study shows that people with severe mental illnesses, and particularly psychosis, experience significantly poorer outcomes resulting from COVID-19, which are only partly explained by pre-existing physical health conditions.

If you care about mental health, please read studies about defying your body clock may lead to depression, anxiety, and findings of this natural food supplement that may help relieve anxiety.

For more information about Covid, please see recent studies about why bald men may have higher risk of severe COVID-19, and results showing that immune system has lasting defence after recovery from COVID-19.

The study is published in Molecular Psychiatry. One author of the study is Dr. Lamiece Hassan.

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