The financial crisis of 2008 was the most serious crisis since the great depression of 1929. Financial institutions worldwide suffered severe damages, reaching a climax with the bankruptcy of the Lehman brothers on September 15, 2008. Money market mutual funds, a key source of credit, saw mass withdrawal demands to avoid losses and the interbank lending market tightened, threatening banks with imminent failure!

Eleven years later, the first case of COVID-19 was announced in a Chinese city, WUHAN. This was the mark of the greatest pandemic in the history of earth! Panic and fear spread like wild fire across the world. The disease too spread very fast! The impact of the catastrophe was measured in individual loss and death, as well as the national and global disruption to almost every part of life. Every country in the world was touched. The economic contagion in the world spread rapidly as many countries experienced failures in key businesses, declines in consumer wealth and increased financial debts.

In a bid to contain the disease, countries suggested a lockdown. A ban on international travel and inter district movements were restricted. “Non-essential businesses” were not to operate for a definite period of time. The economy grappled! People lost jobs, investments were ruined, but worst of all, people lost lives. The restriction of movement affected the health sector in a way. Districts that did not have quality medical care were to seek better medical treatment, but this was hard, as the means of transport were scarce. The world economy faced the worst downturn since 1945. The population became desperate, there was no business, no school and jobs. While the economic and political implications have been studied in detail, the impact on health, especially that of mental health, has received less attention.

As we healed from this menace, the Russian invasion of Ukraine took full force. Most economies that have been in the pipe line to recover, have definitely slowed down. The global business fraternity has been hit hard by the sanctions against Russia. Russia is the world’s largest natural gas exporter and wheat with exports of up to $110.1B as of 2021.

Oil contributes to 39% of the source of fuel worldwide. This means that a restriction to the supply of oil, will increase the prices of most goods and services worldwide. This is already being reflected. Every single item has gone up, the supply is limited but the demand is growing. As the cost of living is going up, salaries have been kept constant and some companies are downsizing. The population can no longer afford the basic needs.  Survival is at stake! People are now engaging in very risky behavior like robbery, prostitution, drug abuse and gambling in order to survive. Most families find it so hard to afford basic needs. This has put mental health to test. There is reasonably an increase in number of mental health cases. Despite all this, the population ought to know that this is temporary, a brighter future is coming!

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