2019-coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is causing insurmountable psychosocial impact on the whole mankind. Marginalized community, particularly those with substance use disorders (SUD), are particularly vulnerable to contract the infection and also likely to suffer from greater psychosocial burden.
Researchers say it’s too soon to have definitive data on the pandemic’s effects, but early numbers are concerning. So far, alcohol sales have risen by more than 25%. A recent analysis of 500,000 urine drug tests by Millennium Health, a national laboratory service, also showed worrisome trends: an increase of 32% for nonprescribed fentanyl, 20% for methamphetamine, and 10% for cocaine from mid-March through May. And suspected drug overdoses climbed 18% in the same period, according to a national tracking system run out of the University of Baltimore.
People who suffer from the disease of addiction are particularly vulnerable to both catching the coronavirus and having a more severe disease when they do catch it. There are many reasons for this, but they boil down to something called social determinants of health, which according to the CDC are “conditions in the places where people live, learn, work, and play can affect a wide range of health risks and outcomes.” In short, people suffering from addiction are vastly more vulnerable to coronavirus, as they are more likely to be homeless, poor, smokers with lung or cardiovascular disease, under- or uninsured, or have experienced serious health and socioeconomic issues from drug addiction. There are also millions of vulnerable incarcerated people, many of whom are stuck in jail due to their addictions and related nonviolent drug offenses.
Not only this, but people suffering from addiction and were in the rehabilitation process are also suffering. The ban on going to any of the healthcare places without an actual emergency, had kept the rehab patients from the experts and hence have been a breaking or negative turning point in their treatment process. There is now an enhanced need for a healthcare and mental health professional to get involved within this picture and revitalize the treatment process.
Serene Retreat is one of the leading Addiction and Mental Health Treatment provider based in Malaysia with its branches locally and abroad. For more information about our treatment programs you can reach us via Call/Whatsapp +60 14-687 2268 or visit our website www.sereneretreat.com.my.