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A Mental Health First Aid Service in an Italian University Public Hospital during the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Outbreak

1
Department of Neuroscience, Reproductive Sciences and Dentistry, University of Naples Federico II, 80138 Naples, Italy
2
Intradepartmental Program of Clinical Psychology, Federico II University Hospital, 80131 Naples, Italy
3
Department of Translational Medical Sciences, University of Naples Federico II, 80131 Naples, Italy
4
Department of Humanistic Studies, University of Naples Federico II, 80133 Naples, Italy
5
Department of Neuroscience, University of Naples Federico II, Reproductive Sciences and Dentistry, 80131 Naples, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(10), 4244; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12104244
Received: 20 April 2020 / Revised: 20 May 2020 / Accepted: 21 May 2020 / Published: 21 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Working during the COVID-19 Global Pandemic)
The recent outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has been extremely stressful and has produced fear and anxiety throughout the population, representing a psychological emergency. This work aimed at presenting a mental health first aid service established within an Italian university public hospital context to address four different population targets (i.e., people vulnerable to mental health problems, health-care professionals, people in isolation, and general citizenship). Specifically, the organizational structure comprising four different areas (i.e., management, clinical, communication, and research) and first data collected from the foundation of the service until 3 May 2020 are presented. Findings indicated that anxiety and fear of contagion were the main motivations prompting both the general population and health-care professionals to ask for a psychological help. Furthermore, findings indicate that clients’ current quality of life was perceived as lower than in the past but also that imagined in the future, highlighting the importance of psychological first aid interventions. This service may represent an example for helping mental health professionals in developing similar services in their local realities, promoting health and individual and community resilience. View Full-Text
Keywords: COVID-19; first aid; mental health; quality of life; psychological intervention COVID-19; first aid; mental health; quality of life; psychological intervention
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Maldonato, N.M.; Bottone, M.; Chiodi, A.; Continisio, G.I.; De Falco, R.; Duval, M.; Muzii, B.; Siani, G.; Valerio, P.; Vitelli, R.; Scandurra, C. A Mental Health First Aid Service in an Italian University Public Hospital during the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Outbreak. Sustainability 2020, 12, 4244.

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