In the context of COVID-19, several countries have implemented measures that include confining the population, for example, at home or in shelters, for long and indefinite periods. These conditions could have a profound effect on pre-existing mental health conditions and disorders related to psychoactive substance use. Similarly, there could be recurrences of concurrent mental disorders or dual pathology, relapses, and other negative consequences related to difficulties in accessing mental health care.
The current COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented challenge that has several implications for health services. For example, within the framework of comprehensive care, anyone who accesses treatment for substance use disorder must be guaranteed a differential diagnosis, including assessment of concurrent disorders or dual pathology and infectious diseases, aimed at defining measures of prevention, treatment, and combined activation of social and community services.
This virtual round table will provide valuable contributions on the approach and actions to take into account in addressing mental health problems and substance use.