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The DEEP study: Emerging evidence on the impact of COVID-19 on mental health services and health inequalities in highly deprived communities (2021 – 2024)

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The DEEP study: Emerging evidence on the impact of COVID-19 on mental health services and health inequalities in highly deprived communities (2021 – 2024)

Funder: The NIHR Three Research Schools, £171,872

Award holder: Dr Ge Yu

Team

  • Supervision: Prof Luke Vale, Dr Luke Munford, Prof Dawn Craig, Prof Peter McMeekin, Prof Sheena Ramsay
  • Mentoring: Prof Bruce Hollingsworth

About this project

It is likely that the pandemic will be responsible for increased demand for mental health services. However, it also provides an opportunity to rethink conventional approaches to mental health services planning to meet these needs for underserved population.

This project looks at evidence on changes to mental health services due to COVID-19 and their impact on health outcomes in highly deprived communities. This project will also provide practice recommendations on how an appropriate service should be provided in a timely manner and what would be a minimum acceptable service for times of emergency or lockdown.

How it will be carried out

A mixed methods approach is employed, comprising a rapid review, an observational study using retrospective routine data, and a Delphi survey.

A rapid review will be undertaken to provide an evidence base supporting the recommendation of effective and acceptable mental health services and identify areas where the evidence base is lacking, and future research is required.

A new longitudinal data resource will be created by linking together data from retrospective administrative data sets. The data resource will be used to investigate changes in mental health services received by deprived populations with pre-existing mental health conditions and their health outcomes between multiple time periods of the COVID-19 lockdown including out of lockdown.

A regional online Delphi study will be undertaken to seek consensus on acceptable and effective organisation and delivery of care, and essential services whilst keeping risk of harmful infection low in a post pandemic future.

Protocol for the study

The protocol for the rapid review study has been registered with the PROSPERO (CRD42022306923) and will be published in a peer reviewed journal.

The protocol for the multiple health data-linkage mixed methods study will be registered with the PROSPERO and published in a peer reviewed journal.

Want to hear more?

If you are interested in being involved in the project or would like to hear more about it, please contact on Dr Ge Yu (ge.yu@ncl.ac.uk).