The purpose of the Survey on COVID-19 and Mental Health is to collect data to assess the impacts of COVID-19 on the mental health and well-being of Canadians. Given that the pandemic has significantly altered our daily lives, it is necessary to gather information on its effects on mental health and coping skills.
This voluntary survey includes topics on behaviours and symptoms associated with depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), suicide risk, pressure on parents, substance use, household violence, as well as general mental health.
The data will be used by the Public Health Agency of Canada and may be used by other government organizations to inform the delivery of services and support to Canadians, during and after the pandemic.
Your information may also be used by Statistics Canada for other statistical and research purposes and your email address may be used to contact you for participation in other surveys.
Information from partially completed or unsaved questionnaires may also be retained and used.
Block Information Confidentiality
Data are collected under the authority of the Statistics Act, Revised Statutes of Canada, 1985, Chapter S-19. Your information will be kept strictly confidential.
Block Information on Data sharing agreements and record linkage
Data sharing agreements and record linkage
Data sharing agreements
To avoid duplication of surveys, Statistics Canada has signed an agreement with the Public Health Agency of Canada, to share the information that you provided on this survey. They have agreed to keep your information confidential and use it only for statistical purposes.
To enhance the data from this survey and reduce response burden, Statistics Canada may combine the information you provide with data from other surveys or administrative sources.
Block Information on Topics covered in the survey
Topics covered in the survey
The survey asks questions about
- general mental health
- symptoms associated with depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- suicide risk
- pressure on parents
- substance use
- household violence.
Block Information on Published data
Statistics Canada publishes the results of its surveys in many formats. To find all the documents related to this survey, follow the links below and type the name of the survey in the search engine located at the left of your screen to filter the results.
Data: You will find tables, profiles of a community or region, thematic maps, public use microdata files, and data visualization tools.
Analysis: You will have direct access to Stats in brief (e.g., releases from The Daily, fact sheets), articles and reports, and journals and periodicals.
Block Information on Survey-specific questions
- Who uses this information? How will it be used?
- Why are you spending money on this survey when you could be putting it into health care?
- Do I have to take part in this survey?
- How long will it take to complete this survey?
- I’m too old. Couldn’t other people better answer your questions?
- I don’t have a mental health problem. Do I need to participate?
- How can people get a copy of the results?
- How do I know that my privacy will be protected?
Who uses this information? How will it be used?
- Public Health Agency of Canada will use this information when making funding decisions, developing priorities and new policies, services and programs.
- Researchers will have more information on Canadians’ mental health, in order to monitor, analyse and measure those factors affecting mental health and to report on them.
- Local health authorities, community groups and social agencies might use this information to determine how to best allocate resources in order to improve the mental health of the people living in their community.
- The media might use this information to raise awareness about mental health, and to report on trends in the health status of Canadians.
Why are you spending money on this survey when you could be putting it into health care?
Given the unprecedented nature of the COVID-19 pandemic and the measures put in place to contain it, the extent of the impacts on mental health and other aspects of life within households is largely unknown. A timely assessment of the mental health and well-being of Canadians will help inform government decision-making in order to support all Canadians and their families during this pandemic.
In addition, federal and provincial governments spend billions of dollars on health care. It is important that decisions about health priorities are well informed, so that your tax money can be spent in the most effective way, especially during this pandemic.
Do I have to take part in this survey?
Your participation in this survey is voluntary; however, your participation will help to ensure that survey results are complete and representative of the entire population.
Mental Health is an important part of everyone’s life. For the results to be representative, it is important that we have data from a broad spectrum of the Canadian population, including those in good and poor mental health.
How long will it take to complete this survey?
It takes, on average, about 30 minutes to complete the questionnaire. The length varies depending on each respondent’s answers.
I’m too old. Couldn’t other people better answer your questions?
Mental health is an important part of everyone’s life. We need to interview a variety of people, old and young, men and women, in order for the survey results to represent all people living in Canada. Your answers will also help local mental health agencies or professionals to improve and develop mental health programs tailored to your local population.
I don’t have a mental health problem. Do I need to participate?
We need to interview a variety of people to ensure that the results of this survey are representative of the Canadian population. It is just as important to hear from people who have no problems as it is from those who do. Your answers are very important as they represent the mental health status of many other Canadians and help to draw a complete picture of mental health in Canada.
How can people get a copy of the results?
An article in the Daily, Statistics Canada’s official release bulletin, will be made available on our website for members of the public to access (Statistics Canada) in February 2021.
How do I know that my privacy will be protected?
All of the surveys conducted by Statistics Canada are collected under the Statistics Act. This means that by law, all of the information must be kept confidential. All employees of Statistics Canada are under oath and may be prosecuted or penalized if they do not safeguard the confidentiality of the data. Survey results will be grouped together to ensure that no individuals can be identified.
Block Information on Other information
In the current context of COVID-19, many people are trying to adjust to the new norms, such as returning to work or day-to-day life. During this time, many people may not feel that they are in control of things, and it is normal to feel concerned, sad, stressed, confused, scared or worried.
Should you need any support, please contact any of the following resources:
- Canada Suicide Prevention Service
A national network of existing distress, crisis and suicide prevention line services
Crisis Services Canada
- APPELLE (Quebec Residents)
Help line for those thinking about suicide or are worried about a loved one
- Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
A wide range of clinical care services for mental illness and addictions
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
- Wellness Together Canada
Mental health and substance use support, resources, and counselling with a mental health professional
Wellness Together Canada
Adults: Text WELLNESS to 741741
Front Line Workers: Text FRONTLINE to 741741
- Kids Help Phone
Available to young Canadians between 5 to 29 years old who are seeking 24-hour confidential and anonymous care with professional counsellors
Kids Help Phone
Text CONNECT to 686868
Online chat: Kids Help Phone - Live Chat
- Hope for Wellness Help Line
Counselling and crisis intervention for all Indigenous peoples across Canada
Hope for Wellness Help Line
Online chat: Hope for Wellness Chat
- Trans LifeLine
A trans-led organization connecting trans people to the community, support, and resources they need
- Strongest Families Institute
Providing services to children and families seeking help for mental health and other issues impacting health and well-being
Strongest Families Institute
- Canadian Mental Health Association (National)
Provides advocacy, programs and resources that help to prevent mental health problems and illnesses and support recovery and resilience
Canadian Mental Health Association
Telephone: 1-866-277-3553 (In Quebec)
- Government of Canada
Links for family violence resources and services in your area
Family Violence Resources
- Canada Suicide Prevention Service
- For more information about this survey (questionnaires, definitions, data sources and methods used): survey number 5330