- 06 January 2021
- Journal article
COVID-19 and mental health deterioration by ethnicity and gender in the UK
- PLoS ONE
We use the UK Household Longitudinal Study and compare pre-COVID-19 pandemic (2017-2019) and during-COVID-19 pandemic data (April 2020) for the same group of individuals to assess and quantify changes in mental health as measured by changes in the GHQ-12 (General Health Questionnaire), among ethnic groups in the UK. We confirm the previously documented average deterioration in mental health for the whole sample of individuals interviewed before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, we find that the average increase in mental distress varies by ethnicity and gender. Both women –regardless of their ethnicity– and Black, Asian, and minority ethnic (BAME) men experienced a higher average increase in mental distress than White British men, so that the gender gap in mental health increases only among White British individuals. These ethnic-gender specific changes in mental health persist after controlling for demographic and socioeconomic characteristics. Finally, we find some evidence that, among men, Bangladeshi, Indian and Pakistani individuals have experienced the highest average increase in mental distress with respect to White British men.
Copyright: © 2021 Proto, Quintana-Domeque. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Proto, E. & Quintana-Domeque, C. 2021, 'COVID-19 and mental health deterioration by ethnicity and gender in the UK', PLoS ONE, 16(1), article no: e0244419. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0244419
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