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Minerva Psychiatry 2021 June;62(2):55-64

DOI: 10.23736/S2724-6612.20.02108-1


language: English

Mental health impacts of COVID-19 outbreak and associated drivers among university students in Bangladesh

Ayatullah KHAN 1, Kazi H. KABIR 1, 2, Kamrul HASAN 1 , Rabindra N. ACHARYYA 3, Mazidul ISLAM 4, Rashmia SULTANA 1, Sanju KARMOKAR 1, Sardar AL IMRAN 1

1 Development Studies Discipline, Khulna University, Khulna, Bangladesh; 2 The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China; 3 Pharmacy Discipline, Khulna University, Khulna, Bangladesh; 4 Mass Communication and Journalism Discipline, Khulna University, Khulna, Bangladesh

BACKGROUND: Mental health impacts due to COVID-19 outbreak are observable among university students. The aim of this research was to determine the mental health impacts of COVID-19 outbreak and associated drivers among university students in Bangladesh.
METHODS: A cross-sectional study was performed among 368 participants from Khulna University (Khulna-9208) in Bangladesh. Data were collected through an online self-reported questionnaire including demographic and selected characteristics of the participants, 7-item generalized anxiety disorder (GAD-7) scale to measure the prevalence of anxiety and 9-item patient health questionnaire (PHQ-9) scale to measure the prevalence of depression. The ordered logit model was used to determine the associated drivers of anxiety and depression.
RESULTS: The estimated prevalence rates of anxiety were 87%, among them 29.3%, 33.7%, and 23.9% had mild, moderate and severe, respectively. Accordingly, the estimated prevalence rates of depression were 81.5%, among them 25%, 23.9%, 20.1%, and 12.5% had mild, moderate, moderately severe and severe, respectively. The likelihood of anxiety and depression among participants has been mostly derived by residing urban area, not having stable family income, living with parents, having relatives or acquaintances infected with COVID-19, being worried about academic delays, and with the disruption of daily-life.
CONCLUSIONS: University students are experienced a higher level of anxiety and depressive symptoms in Bangladesh. As the majority of students spend their time in social media during the quarantine, the implications of COVID-19 on mental health in this population can be reduced by means of online consultancy, campaigns and other awareness initiatives.

KEY WORDS: COVID-19; Mental health; Bangladesh

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