COVID-19 Operational Guidance Note: Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) within Health Programs

2020International Rescue Committee

This guidance summarizes the key actions for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) within the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. We anticipate that pre-existing mental health conditions will be exacerbated, and that new mental health problems will be induced by the COVID19 pandemic. This will occur in countries where IRC has ongoing MHPSS programming, and also in countries where IRC programs does not have dedicated mental health services and supports. We have outlined how to support continuity of existing MHPSS service and anticipate how to adapt programs based on the increased demand for MHPSS. All MHPSS plans should be coordinated with other sectors and other partners implementing MHPSS activities. This guidance note is for MHPSS linked to the health system. There will be separate – but complementary – guidance notes for MHPSS interventions that are implemented through VPRU, Education and ERD programs.

Key wordscoronavirus outbreak (COVID-19) / disaster / human rights / mental health