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Why there’s still ‘a lot’ of lockdown anxiety in Victoria, and how to deal with it

Neil Mitchell
Article image for Why there’s still ‘a lot’ of lockdown anxiety in Victoria, and how to deal with it

While Victorians are no longer in lockdown, and there hasn’t been a locally acquired COVID-19 case in 13 days, an emergency physician says there’s still “a lot of anxiety” in the community.

Emergency physician and former AMA vice-president, Stephen Parnis, says looming uncertainty is driving the anxious public mood.

“One of the themes that keeps coming through in the discussions is the fact that there is still so much uncertainty,” he told Neil Mitchell.

“How long do we need to continue to live with these sorts of restrictions?

“It means we can’t plan with the confidence we would have a year ago.

“The thing that we fear in those quite moments is a mutation of the virus that results in more serious diseases.”

Dr Parnis says the extended lockdown will have lasting impacts.

“Things like domestic violence, substance abuse, self-harm, exacerbations of all the psychotic illnesses, all of these things are up in a rate that I’ve never seen before,” he said.

But the emergency physician says there are things those feeling COVID-19 anxiety can do to reduce their suffering.

“Let’s count our blessings. The things that I used to take for granted I absolutely savour now — time with friends and family, interstate travel,’ he said.

“There is so much bad news out there but let’s also focus on the good news.

“Adversity is the greatest teacher.”

Press PLAY below for more.

Anyone experiencing difficulties should contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.

Neil Mitchell
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