Must disclose mental illness

COVID-19: People with severe mental illness need to be vaccinated quickly

Vienna (OTS) -Some mental illnesses lead to a more severe course of COVID-19 in a similar way to some physical illnesses. The mentally ill affected must therefore be prioritized with regard to vaccination in the same way as the physically ill.

In the past few months, several studies have shown that serious and long-lasting mental illnesses increase the likelihood of getting worse from COVID-19. The specific consequences are, among other things, increased hospital admissions, more mechanical ventilation and higher mortality. Those particularly affected here are people with severe courses of schizophrenia, depression, bipolar diseases, substance addiction and dementia. Taken together, this is at least 2% of the adult population in Austria.

People with severe and chronic mental illnesses show an increased mortality even without COVID-19, which can be attributed to the fact that they also suffer more frequently from cardiovascular diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, respiratory diseases, obesity or liver diseases. In addition, COVID-19 leads to more intensive care treatments and more deaths in these mentally ill people.

The Austrian Society for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics (ÖGPP), together with the Austrian Society for Social Psychiatry (ÖGSP) and the Austrian Society for Geriatric Psychiatry and Geriatric Psychotherapy (ÖGAPP), recommends that people with severe mental illnesses be officially recognized as a risk group and included in the vaccination strategy must be taken into account. Policy makers are asked to put this group of people in the same category as people with diabetes mellitus, coronary artery disease, heart failure or bronchial asthma.

The entire statement can be found at:

Inquiries & contact:

Mag. Harald Berger
ÖGPP administration
[email protected]
+43676/320 80 75