Gay and bisexual men are being urged to get involved in the first online survey of its kind looking into the impact of Coronavirus social distancing on their mental health.
Gay and bisexual men already experience major health inequalities but it is vitally important to find out what impact the Coronavirus lockdown has had on their mental health.
Researchers are urgently calling on gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men from Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to sign up to the newly launched Gay and Bisexual Men’s Health Survey 2020.
They say it’s vitally important that as many people as possible get involved because the findings could help save lives, and lead to better and more targeted support as we come out of lockdown.
Glasgow Caledonian University Sexual Health Psychologist Dr Jamie Frankis is the lead investigator in the Scottish Government funded survey entitled ‘How has COVID-19 social distancing amplified the mental health vulnerabilities of gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men (GBM)?’
Dr Frankis said: “Taking part in our survey could literally help save lives because we’ll use the results to create better mental health services for gay and bisexual men.
“We need to find out what impact social distancing has had on the mental and wider health of gay and bisexual men, as well as our alcohol and drug use, and resilience to these problems.
“Although there’s been a lot of COVID-19 research looking at mental health and wellbeing, we believe this is the only study that is specifically looking at the impact of lockdown on gay and bisexual men.
“Gay and bisexual men already have worse mental health than the wider population. However, COVID-19 restrictions will hit this group even harder because their main sources of support including gay bars, meeting people through apps and even work have been removed.”
The study is supported by the former GCU psychologist Professor Paul Flowers, now at Strathclyde University, the University of Glasgow, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, NHS Lanarkshire, NHS Lothian, Health Protection Scotland, HIV Scotland, Terrence Higgins Trust and Waverley Care.
To take part in the survey go to the website – https://smmash2020.org?ad=8