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ARQ1 Paper 2: Trends in mental health inequalities during the UK COVID-19 pandemic: A cross-cohort analysis


  • Several studies have been conducted which show psychological distress has increased during the pandemic. However, most have not had pre-pandemic measures of mental health for comparison and most are in the first couple of months of the pandemic.

  • Currently unknown the extent to which impacts on mental health persist or if adverse trends reverse over time and if increases in psychological distress are due to ‘lockdown’.

  • Individual studies have had poor power to determine impacts on inequalities in mental health, especially for different ethnic groups. Social patterning of mental health could evolve over the course of the pandemic.

  • Cross-cohort analyses can allow evolution of trends in mental health to be definitively studied, as well as inequalities impacts.

Specific research questions