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UU Survey findings highlights need for support for student mental health - Archibald

1 February, 2018 - by Caoimhe Archibald

Sinn Féin MLA Caoimhe Archibald has said the findings in a Ulster University survey on student mental health and wellbeing carried out as part of a wider World Health Organisation (WHO) study are very concerning.

The party’s further and higher education spokesperson was speaking after the major study found that more than half of the undergraduates who took part in the study reported suffering a mental health problem.

Caoimhe Archibald said:

“Of the students taking part in the study, 31 percent said they had suicidal thoughts, 24 percent reported a major depressive episode, 22 percent reported an anxiety disorder and more than four in ten students reported suffering panic attacks.

“Female respondents were shown to be significantly more likely than men to report mental health issues and suicidal thoughts, either before starting or during university.

“The study also found that LGB and T young people were five times to be more likely to suffer from mental health issues than heterosexual students.

“These findings highlight again that it is vital for universities to have adequately resourced support in place to help students experiencing mental health problems and that must include referral to specialist care where appropriate.

“It is also important that students are encouraged to seek help and to be more of aware of their own, and others, mental health and emotional well-being." 

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