The UB has started a new psychological support program for the university community. The initiative is part of the objective of including the wellbeing, both physical and emotional, in the academic model of the University of Barcelona. Those interested can access the psychological support program through an online form. Each case is taken care of via an email or phone by professionals from the Psychological Clinic of the UB. For those cases that require so, the user is offered the possibility to change to another type of intervention in the same clinic.
Since the launch of the program, on September 15, a total of seventy-eight people have filled the online form. There are sixteen cases in which it was not possible to contact the user, so a total of sixty-two people have been helped. Eighteen of these people were told to contact the Psychological Clinic of the UB to receive therapy. About 90% of the people that were attended to by the new program are students of bachelor’s and master’s degrees, nearly 8% are PhD students and 2.6% are AdSS members. The most common reasons for these consultations are anxiety and depressive symptoms.
Access to the University involves several transition periods that can lead to high levels of anxiety, they require a time for adaptation and can affect the students’ mental health. Moreover, there are some collectives that are specially vulnerable, for instance people with previous mental health problems, those coming from disadvantaged environments, international students and LGBT+ students. On the other hand, the university community has been affected by the pandemic situation when it comes to the psychological side. In short, the university, like the whole society, is under several sources of tension and psychological discomfort.
In this context, although the University of Barcelona had tools for the emotional support of the university community, the institution has decided to strengthen the task in this field and create new resources such as this new program.