2021 Annual Meeting: March 4-6, 2021

Mental Health Aspects of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Greetings everyone. We talked previously about plans to have a 2021 APPA meeting focused on mood disorders. As you all well know, a lot has happened since March! As a result, we have decided to shift the focus of the meeting to mental health aspects of COVID-19. We will maintain some elements of what was envisioned earlier, in particular with a focus on stress, including its biology and its relation to the development of depression. We will add sessions on stress in relation to anxiety disorders, and also substance use disorders. The new meeting will begin with a review of what is known about the mental health aspects of disasters and pandemics. It will then move to a focus on what is unique in the mental health components of the COVID-19 pandemic, including, for example, the biology of brain effects, the mental health of survivors of acute respiratory distress syndrome, and the effects of social isolation on domestic violence and PTSD. Another area we will highlight is the impact of the pandemic on the mental health of vulnerable and marginalized communities. This meeting will be a chance to assess what we know about the psychological response to disasters and crisis, to see what we have learned in a year about mental health in the current pandemic, and to exchange ideas about the work and research that need to be done next.

James "Jimmy" Potash, MD, MPH, APPA President
Henry Phipps Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Department Director and Psychiatrist-in-Chief
Johns Hopkins Medicine