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Solloway: ‘We won’t ignore mental health impact of Covid-19’

Image: Richard Townshend [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Science minister says sector must not lose sight of impact on mental health of scientists

The impact of Covid-19 on the mental health of researchers must not be ignored, the science minister has written in an article for Research Professional News during Mental Health Awareness Week.

Amanda Solloway said the innovation and dedication demonstrated by the UK’s researchers over recent weeks had been “critical in our response to this pandemic”.

“But alongside efforts to find medical solutions, we must not lose sight of the impact on the mental health of our dedicated scientific community, and communities across the country,” she said.

Solloway pointed to a study by the Student Mental Health Research Network and higher education careers organisation Vitae, showing that two-thirds of early-career researchers are very worried about their future plans, with 70 per cent worried about their finances.

She highlighted a number of government initiatives, including plans to bring forward £100 million of university research funding.

“Having stability in our professional lives is a really important way to deal with our mental health and the government is doing all it can to provide that certainty—for PhD students, scientists and researchers,” she said.

Read the full article here.