By Arré Bench Mar. 30, 2020
German finance minister of state, Thomas Schäfer committed suicide after being “deeply worried” about the coronavirus crisis. Back home, in Kandivali, Mumbai a man killed his brother because he’d stepped out during the lockdown. It is important to focus on your mental health in these time. Fortunately, help is available.
The Coronavirus pandemic has resulted in over seven lakh cases worldwide leading to thousands of deaths, billions of dollars lost in value, and entire countries in partial or total lockdown. While the costs associated with physical health and the economy are apparent and humongous, there is also a mental health crisis simmering underneath.
There is anxiety about the future as most of us are home all day, just refreshing our screens and watching the human toll pile up. The world can seem glum when all you read is one horrific article after another. Many have either children studying abroad or relatives living in other parts of the world that they are worried about, knowing fully well that they can’t physically help them, with travel restrictions in place. The helplessness can get to you. Then there are doctors, nurses and healthcare workers who are subject to turmoil and misery all around them, with coronavirus cases and deaths piling up. With constant communication from multiple sources, and thanks to WhatsApp University, there is now also panic and anxiety around everyday behaviour and what one should or shouldn’t do.
If the coronavirus has proved anything, it is that health issues don’t distinguish between the rich and the poor. And the world was witness to a shocking such case last night, after finance minister of the German state of Hesse, Thomas Schäfer committed suicide after being “deeply worried” about the coronavirus crisis.
The body of a man identified as Thomas Schäfer, the finance minister of the German state of Hesse, was found on a high-speed train line between Frankfurt and Mainz, police confirmed. https://t.co/VfYM1GyzSS
— DW News (@dwnews) March 29, 2020
State premier Volker Bouffier issued a statement saying, “His main concern was whether he could manage to fulfill the huge expectations of the population, especially in terms of financial aid. For him, there was clearly no way out. He was desperate, and so he had to leave us. That has shocked us, has shocked me.”
UPDATE: The finance minister of the German state of Hesse, Thomas Schäfer, apparently committed suicide in despair about the scale of the state response required to tackle the #coronavirus crisis, initial investigations suggest. https://t.co/VfYM1GQbhs
— DW News (@dwnews) March 29, 2020
A few days back, an Italian nurse killed herself after testing positive from coronavirus and worrying she had infected others. Daniela Trezzi was working at a hospital in Lombardy, the worst-affected region of Italy.
Italian nurse kills herself after testing positive for coronavirus and worrying she had infected others https://t.co/YGvQ1GacrK
— Daily Mail Online (@MailOnline) March 25, 2020
Back home, there was a case in Kandivali, Mumbai where a man killed his younger brother because he stepped out during the lockdown. The accused questioned the victim and his wife about the urgency to step out and buy groceries amid the lockdown. The argument turned violent, leading to the death.
— The New Indian Express (@NewIndianXpress) March 27, 2020
Government agencies and institutions have been vocal in addressing the issue. Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has taken the lead in communicating the importance of mental health during the coronavirus outbreak.
Mental Health In Times Of #COVID19
Isolation & stress can be hard for many.
Please understand that this is quite natural.
📺 Limit news intake if it makes you anxious
👨🏾⚕️Listen to your doctor
💊 Don't forget your medicines
We Shall Overcome
— Pinarayi Vijayan (@vijayanpinarayi) March 23, 2020
A multidisciplinary team in Kerala has been providing mental health support for those in quarantine and isolation.
A multi-disciplinary team in Kerala provides counselling and psychosocial support for people in isolation and quarantine.
This facilitates people to share their emotions, concerns, and clarify queries openly without fear of stigmatisation.https://t.co/y0H9GZV1NH
— The Wire (@thewire_in) March 27, 2020
The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare of the Government of India has been proactive on the issue, putting out videos from health experts on how to manage your mental health and well-being during the lockdown. Amongst other things, experts advised to have a daily routine, engage in activities of choice, minimise watching news, play indoor games, keep yourself physically active by walking around the house or doing yoga/exercises and have a healthy diet and sleep routine.
Know from the health experts on how to manage your mental health & well-being during the #COVID19 outbreak.
Watch the video to know more:https://t.co/LXluJbZpdX#SwasthaBharat #HealthForAll @PMOIndia @drharshvardhan @AshwiniKChoubey @PIB_India @DDNewslive
— Ministry of Health 🇮🇳 #StayHome #StaySafe (@MoHFW_INDIA) March 27, 2020
The Ministry also announced a toll free number 080-46110007 that has been set up by the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS) in Bengaluru for people with mental health issues.
Take care of your mental health and well-being during the #COVID19 outbreak.
Get help for these concerns from NIMHANS. See details below.
#CoronaOutbreak #SwasthaBharat #HealthForAll pic.twitter.com/EX3fZoXH9g
— Ministry of Health 🇮🇳 #StayHome #StaySafe (@MoHFW_INDIA) March 29, 2020
As medical experts have repeated time and again, stay physically healthy, stay healthy, stay safe.