Psychological services help ease nerves amid coronavirus epidemic

Source: Xinhua| 2020-02-13 19:28:09|Editor: huaxia

SHENYANG, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- Wang Zhao, who lives in the city of Shenyang, northeast China's Liaoning Province, has been anxious about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic for weeks.

"The first thing I do every morning is to check the number of virus infections in the city, it always makes me so worried," said Wang. "Also, I'm too afraid to leave my home. I feel like I have cabin fever."

Fortunately for Wang, things have changed after she had a talk with the local public psychological counselor. "The counselor gave me valuable advice on my life during the epidemic, making me realize that too much anxiety is unnecessary."

As the COVID-19 epidemic continues, China has listed psychological intervention as an integral part of the battle against the epidemic. Under such circumstances, many efforts have been made in Shenyang to counter frustration, anxiety and other emotional tensions of the public.

"The Shenyang Mental Health Center has worked out several ways to soothe people's feelings during the epidemic," said Zeng Xiandong, deputy head of the city's health commission. "Besides receiving psychological counseling over the phone, people can also listen to special soothing audio online for relaxation."

At hospitals, psychological services are equally important. "It is our job to pacify the patients and build their confidence in recovery," said Liu Hongyan, a doctor with the Sixth People's Hospital of Shenyang, the designated medical institution for COVID-19 infection treatment in Liaoning Province.

Previously, a mother and her daughter, both infected with the virus, had received treatment at the hospital. To create the best emotional environment for treatment, they were put in the same room where they received encouragement from doctors on WeChat. "It didn't take us too long to recover, all thanks to the hospital's efforts," said the daughter surnamed Ding.

In addition to that, doctors will also visit those who have recovered from the infection and check on their emotional status.

The psychological services provided to the public and medical workers will help ease the emotional tensions caused by the epidemic, and with the battle against the virus in the long term, said Zeng.