Comorbidity and COVID-19: Investigating the Relationship between Medical and Psychological Well-being

Owen Stafford, Anna Berry, Laura K Taylor, Sinead Wearen, Cian Prendergast, Eddie Murphy, Mark Shevlin, Louise McHugh, Alan Carr, Tom Burke

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The unprecedented occurrence of a global pandemic is accompanied by both physical and psychological burdens that may impair quality of life. Research relating to COVID-19 aims to determine the effects of the pandemic on vulnerable populations who are at high risk of developing negative health or psychosocial outcomes. Having an ongoing medical condition during a pandemic may lead to greater psychological distress. Increased psychological distress may be due to preventative public health measures (e.g. lockdown), having an ongoing medical condition, or a combination of these factors. This study analyses data from an online cross-sectional national survey of adults in Ireland and investigates the relationship between comorbidity and psychological distress. Those with a medical condition (n=128) were compared to a control group without a medical condition (n=128) and matched according to age, gender, annual income, education, and work status during COVID-19. Participants and data were obtained during the first public lockdown in Ireland (27.03.2020-08.06.2020). Individuals with existing medical conditions reported significantly higher levels of anxiety (p
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-23
JournalIrish Journal of Psychological Medicine
Early online date29 Apr 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Apr 2021


  • COVID-19
  • Comorbidity
  • Ireland
  • Mental Health
  • Pandemic


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