Are you taking care of your mental health?

Whether we are aware of it or not, COVID-19 has taken a toll on all of us … man, woman and child worldwide.

The tell-tale signs are widespread. In one of the first nationwide aggregate COVID-19 claims studies, Cigna is exploring how extensive the first-year impact of the pandemic is shaping the future of health care. The study found there was a 27% increase in behavioral health outpatient care compared to pre-pandemic levels. 63% of all behavioral patients were female (vs. 48% pre-COVID), with females seeking care at higher rates than males across all age and ethnic groups. 45% of those seeking behavioral care were under 30.

More depressing statistics: There was a 7.9% increase in use of antidepressant medications in 2020 vs. 2019. Nearly one-third (32.1%) of people taking antidepressants in 2020 had no history of use 6 months prior to their first prescription fill date.

Not surprising, mental health issues related to COVID are finding their way into the workplace. 93% of Human Resources decision-makers voiced concern about employees’ mental health. 57% of health plan decision makers had seen the value of mental health services increase more than most other services/benefits because of COVID-19.

One trend has accelerated since the pandemic began: telemedicine. Before the pandemic, virtual visits made up just over 1% of all medical and behavioral professional office visits that could be conducted virtually. Today, they make up nearly 25%. Primary care and behavioral services were the largest specialties utilized virtually in 2020: Over 1/5 of primary care was performed virtually. Nearly 2/3 of behavioral care was performed virtually. Over half of Americans (58%) are comfortable with virtual consultations replacing in-person visits, especially if it:

  • Is more convenient (can remain at home/work): 47%
  • Decreased costs: 44% Allowed for free virtual follow-ups: 37%
  • Allowed for long-distance care (if out of area/traveling): 35%

Insureous Health Solutions has several excellent and inexpensive telemedicine plans for both individuals and groups. Contact us for a quote today.

And if you are seeking guidance or help for substance misuse or mental health issues, contact the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration ( or locally, Lakeview Health in Jacksonville, FL.

You can view the Cigna research study here.