Paper Title
Impact of Covid-19 Pandemic on Individuals with Pre-Existing Mental Illnesses in India

One of the most important aspects of life that have been impacted by the pandemic is mental health. The lack of already existing mental health services, especially in India has been a very hard path to walk on for a long time as the expenditure on the mental health sector is close to negligible, in India. This study aimed to understand how the Covid-19 pandemic has impacted the mental health of individuals who were already suffering from different disorders, whether it has exacerbated their condition or helped in any way. Phenomenological approach was taken up in order to assess 5 different individuals with pre-existing, diagnosed mental disorders on their experiences and issues during the pandemic and the lockdown. A semi-structured virtual interview took place via zoom and informed consent was taken beforehand. A thematic analysis was done in order to assess the recorded data into 4 themes- 1. Lack of motivation and productivity 2. The inconvenience of mental health services 3. Impact of physical confinement 4. Self and disorder awareness. Further researches in this area will help us understand the need for accessible mental health services and how to tackle these issues. Keywords - Covid-19, Pandemic, Mental Health, India, Phenomenological approach, Mental Disorders