September 28, 2021 – Mental Health Research Canada (MHRC) has released its 8th survey in its ongoing series of surveys on Canadians’ mental health since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. This study reveals asignificant divide in mental health experiences of Canadians as more of the population is vaccinated. Respondents who have not been vaccinated indicated significantly more symptoms of mental distress, as well as higher levels of anxiety and depression compared to those who have received the vaccine.
For the first time in this ongoing series of MHRC research – designed, conducted, and analysed by Pollara Strategic Insights – the majority (84%) of respondents reported being double-vaccinated. Three out of four of these individuals (75%) indicated concern about the continuing potential threat of COVID-19, compared to 38% of unvaccinated respondents. However, unvaccinated Canadians indicated significantly higher levels of anxiety and depression when looking ahead two months in the context of pandemic-related restrictions.
Key findings include:
- A quarter (26%) of parents indicate that their children “rarely” or “never” had a chance to socialize with other children in the last month.
- A third (32%) of Canadians indicate either that they are, or they should be, accessing mental health supports since COVID-19.
- The increase in mental health service delivery is almost entirely in virtual services (phone, text, online) — 4% of Canadians were accessing services in this way in the year prior to COVID, compared to 14% now.
These and other key findings are featured in both the summary report and full survey report for this wave of research – as well as an interactive, searchable data portal – available at www.mhrc.ca. The online survey was conducted amongst a randomly-selected, reliable sample of N=3,010 adult Canadians from August 17-24, 2021, as part of MHRC’s ongoing series of surveys – “Mental Health in Crisis: How COVID-19 Is Impacting Canadians” – designed to capture Canadians’ perceptions of their levels of anxiety and depression to identify and evaluate factors that influence mental health.