Mental Health and Psycho-social Responses to COVID-19 in Ethiopia


  • Azeb Asaminew Alemu
  • Noah Wubshet
  • Abebaw Ayele
  • Wassie Kebede
  • Henok Hailu


COVID-19 has a wide range of effects on the mental health of the public, people in isolation, vulnerable individuals, and health workers. This article has collected reports from the Ethiopian national public health emergency operations center, the Federal Ministry of Health- Ethiopia and the Health Professionals Advisory Council and included direct observations from the responses to review the mental health and psycho-social responses of Ethiopia to the COVID-19 pandemic, to share experiences and provide policy recommendations. The worldwide effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health and psycho-social aspects of the public, restrictions due to the State of Emergency in Ethiopia, the pre-existing resource limitations in mental health care and an increase in returnees with multiple needs had increased the need for mental health and psycho-social support of individuals affected by COVID-19 in Ethiopia. Multiple stakeholders from governmental institutions, professional associations and non-governmental organizations had come together to mitigate the impact. The response included training healthcare providers, preparing guiding documents, mental health messages to the public, and providing mental health and psycho-social support services to individuals admitted in quarantines and treatment centers as well as health workers. The inclusion of Mental Health and Psycho-social support in the emergency response has shown promising results in Ethiopia that can be adopted in the management of other public health emergencies. The effectiveness of mental health and psycho-social interventions relies on recognizing the need of mental health services and increasing metal health resource allocation. [Ethiop. J. Health Dev. 2021; 35(SI-4):00-00]

Key Words: COVID-19, Ethiopia, Mental Health, Psycho-social support



How to Cite

Azeb Asaminew Alemu, Noah Wubshet, Abebaw Ayele, Wassie Kebede, & Henok Hailu. (2021). Mental Health and Psycho-social Responses to COVID-19 in Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Journal of Health Development, 35(4).



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