The experience of staying at home during the Covid-19 pandemic and people’s changes of routine are causing stress, anxiety, and depression, says Rodolfo Lozano, coordinator of the psychology and research area for the Doc.com remote medical assistance and guidance app. This has increased the use of telepsychology for attending to these disorders.
Since the start of confinement, this Mexican application has reported a 30% increase in the number of users and in the ages of people requesting these services. “The average user is generally between the ages of 15 and 30, but we’ve had a significant number of people between the ages of 25 and 50 signing up to find solutions to anxiety, anguish, and stress issues since the start of the coronavirus emergency,” says Lozano.
This psychologist attributes the causes of these conditions to the closure of some companies, reduced funds coming into the home, and financial burdens that people are dealing with during this lockdown, which translate into malaise, discomfort, and concern about the immediate future. It is precisely in confinement that remote therapy has become an alternative.
The Mexican app Doc.com offers remote medical and psychological attention every day of the year, 24 hours a day, with a team of around 60 people working three shifts. The cost of subscription ranges from 20 to 240 pesos. Although patients are treated by different doctors and psychologists, the group of specialists has access to each patient’s history, so they are able to provide precise follow-up.
Take-up of remote medical guidance is on the rise. The report Telehealth is the ‘New Front Door’ Amidst a Pandemic from the Oliver Wyman consultancy firm indicates that 65% of consumers are willing to use this type of service, although only 8% have tried it. However, the trend in use will rise in the coming years. The report estimates that 70% of patients will see their doctors through a video call by 2025.
Although the health authorities in Mexico have recommended that people look for alternatives to take care of their mental health and have provided telephone numbers to the public for psychological guidance during confinement, there is a certain amount of resistance to trying out remote therapy, says Lozano.
The psychological coordinator of Doc.com affirms that these options are an opportunity to improve people’s wellbeing and for them to learn how to organize their lives based on comprehensive work on their emotions.
“Many people have probably reached these services due to this situation. They’ll continue using them even after the end of the coronavirus pandemic because of this experience and because they feel accompanied,” adds the specialist.
- More people have sought online psychological guidance since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic
- Your electronic devices can help you find psychological guidance if you feel anxious or depressed
- One report predicts that seven out of 10 people will use video calls to see their doctors by 2025