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State Behavioral Health Agency Releases Mental Health PSA’s During COVID-19 Pandemic

The Maryland Department of Health released a series of short public service announcements on YouTube Wednesday that detail how Marylanders can mitigate anxiety and depression brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Self-care is so important, especially when presented with great uncertainty,” said Maryland Health Secretary Robert R. Neall in a statement. “I want to make sure we give our community every tool available to get through this crisis.”

Narrated by Dr. Aliya Jones, deputy secretary of the Maryland Department of Health’s Behavioral Health Administration, the videos are targeted at five specific audiences: parents, the disabled community, young adults, first responders and the elderly. 

In the videos, Jones offers suggestions to Marylanders on how to maintain their mental health during the public health crisis. These tips include exercising, reducing screen time, getting adequate and consistent sleep, eating healthfully, staying hydrated and keeping in close contact with friends and family.

For parents, she recommends limiting children’s news consumption, keeping a structured routine and honestly answering their questions. 

The videos also warn Marylanders to watch for signs of anxiety and depression including a racing pulse rate, disrupted sleep, restlessness, irritability and fatigue.

Each of the 20 videos ends by offering viewers resources available at as well as the 2-1-1 health and human services hotline. 

[Health care providers can find other directives and recommendations here.]

According to a news release, Jones is asking mental health professionals to share these videos with their clients.

“Staying at home and using social distancing from others should not mean complete isolation,” Jones said in a statement. “There are resources available for people who want help.”

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State Behavioral Health Agency Releases Mental Health PSA’s During COVID-19 Pandemic