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31st March, 2020

New study into psychological and social effects of Covid-19


UCL has launched a study into the psychological and social effects of Covid-19 in the UK. Researchers are aiming to recruit a large sample of adults living in the UK to help understand the effects of coronavirus and social distancing measures on individuals.

They will then use the data to help them to track trajectories of mental health and loneliness in the UK over the coming weeks by identifying which groups are most at risk and to understand the effects of any potentially protective activities people could be engaging in.

“This is a very distressing and challenging time, with people having to cope with worries about family, friends, work, and finances as well as increasing numbers of people having to enter full isolation. However, it’s vital that people stay at home,” said the study’s lead author, Dr Daisy Fancourt (UCL Behavioural Science & Health).

“This research will help us to understand what psychological and social challenges people are facing and what factors can protect against negative effects on mental health. The data will be analysed in real time to inform the support people are given and the advice about how to stay well at home.

“We already have over 18,000 participants, but many more are needed. Our data will also help inform the advice that people are given about how to stay well at home.”

The researchers will provide public data each week and the team are liaising with key policy and healthcare bodies within the UK and other countries to produce cross-national comparisons.

The study is open to all people over age 18 in the UK. Participation involves answering a 15-minute online survey now and then answering a shorter 10-minute follow-up survey once a week whilst social isolation measures are in place. To take part, please visit

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