COVID-19 has worsened mental health, economies and prospects for Vancouver residents: survey

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VANCOUVER – As COVID-19 continues to impact the daily lives of most Vancouver residents, a recent city survey suggests that mental health, future prospects, finances, and level of general comfort are worse because of the virus. Earlier this month, the city of Vancouver launched a public inquiry to measure the impacts of COVID-19. The first survey took place from July 7 to 13 and 3,295 responses were collected.

During this week, around 20 new cases of the virus were reported every day.

According to the survey results, which were released Wednesday, the “vast majority” of Vancouverites have experienced challenges because of the virus. One of the most common challenges, for 78% of respondents, is the decrease in recreation and leisure activities.

Savings, income and job security have also been affected for more than a third of residents, according to the survey.

While the job losses and reduced activities come as no surprise, the pandemic has also had a significant impact on overall mental health and feelings of comfort and security.

Survey results show that 88 percent of respondents’ comfort level in being in public has deteriorated, while 72 percent say they have a lesser vision of the future. And 62 percent say their mental health has suffered.

Last week, provincial health officer Dr Bonnie Henry addressed studies suggesting residents of the province were suffering from mental health issues as a result of COVID-19, calling it a “surprise to anyone.”

According to Henry, young people are even more affected in this area.

“Younger people were more likely to report decreased mental health, increased difficulty accessing counseling services, not working, difficulty meeting financial needs, and likely to have to relocate due to their affordability. Henry said last week.

Feedback on the city’s pandemic plan

The city’s survey also asked residents about how its response to the pandemic has been. Almost 70% said they were at least aware the city was making efforts to curb the spread of the virus and around 60% said they were happy with the city’s response.

But for those who were unhappy with the city’s response, managing the crowds in the parks, on the streets and on the sea wall was a priority.

“The city has waited months to do anything about the outdoor space for pedestrians. People walked the streets to physically distance themselves, putting themselves in danger of being hit by cars, ”one respondent said.

Some also said they believed masks should be mandatory in restaurants and businesses and that fines should be applied for lack of physical distancing.

The city has announced that it will conduct these surveys on a monthly basis, with the next open to the public for response on August 4.

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