Coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic associated with anxiety and depression among Non-Hispanic whites with chronic conditions in the US

Hao Wang, Jenny Paul, Ivana Ye, Jake Blalock, R. Constance Wiener, Amy F. Ho, Naomi Alanis, Usha Sambamoorthi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objectives: During the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, increased anxiety and depression were reported, with mixed findings among individuals of different races/ethnicities. This study examines whether anxiety and depression increased during the COVID-19 pandemic compared to the pre-COVD-19 period among different racial/ethnic groups in the US. Methods: The Health Information National Trend Surveys 5 (HINTS 5) Cycle 4 data was analyzed. We used the time when the survey was administered as the pre-COVID-19 period (before March 11, 2020, weighted N = 77,501,549) and during the COVID-19 period (on and after March 11, 2020, weighted N = 37,222,019). The Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ) was used to measure anxiety/depression and further compared before and during COVID-19. Separate multivariable logistic regression analyses were used to determine the association of the COVID-19 pandemic with anxiety/depression after adjusting for age, sex, insurance, income, and education. Result: A higher percentage of Non-Hispanic whites (NHW) with chronic conditions reported anxiety (24.3% vs. 11.5%, p = 0.0021) and depression (20.7% vs. 9.3%, p = 0.0034) during COVID-19 than pre-COVID-19. The adjusted odds ratio (AOR) of anxiety and depression for NHWs with chronic conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic was 2.02 (95% confidence interval of 1.10–3.73, p = 0.025) and 2.33 (1.17–4.65, p = 0.018) compared to NHWs who participated in the survey before the COVID-19. Limitations: Limited to the NHW US population. PHQ can only be used as the initial screening tool. Conclusion: The COVID-19 pandemic was associated with an increased prevalence of anxiety and depression among NHW adults with chronic conditions, but not among people of color.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100331
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders Reports
StatePublished - Apr 2022


  • Anxiety
  • COVID-19
  • Chronic conditions
  • Depression


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