The 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has unleashed a wave of stress and anxiety unlike anything New Yorkers have seen before, and children are not exempt, Jennifer Havens, MD, professor in NYU Langone’s Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and a child psychiatrist at the Child Study Center, writes in an op-ed in the New York Daily News.
“Kids are now grappling with emotional distress and anxiety that children—and many adults—are not equipped to handle,” Dr. Havens writes. “They are cut off from school, friends, and non-immediate family. Many are watching their parents lose their jobs. Some are forced to cope with the sudden loss of a loved one. The consequences are especially dire for children from black, Hispanic, and immigrant communities, where the virus is roughly twice as deadly.”
Dr. Havens says that New York must protect the millions of children facing massive mental health challenges amid this pandemic. “Providing families with accessible care now is key to reducing behavioral health challenges long-term, as well as reducing the risk of school failure and challenged family and personal relationships in the future,” she writes.
Read more from the New York Daily News.