Dear Editor:

Eight months into the pandemic, COVID Recovery Iowa continues to respond to the mental health needs of Iowans across the state. 

“As it gets colder, as the days get shorter, and people aren’t able to get outside as much or gather with their families like they have before, we are concerned that isolation during the holidays and winter could increase with all the stress people are experiencing due to the pandemic,” says Karen Hyatt, Emergency Mental Health Specialist.

It’s important to keep up social connections during the winter, even if only through virtual contacts. Interacting with people and staying engaged can have a positive impact on pandemic stress and depression. Iowans in need of assistance can contact the Iowa Concern Hotline at 800-447-1985 or go to covidrecoveryiowa.org, the Iowa Warm Line 844-775-9276. A Spanish line is also available at 541-800-3687. COVID Recovery Iowa offers free and confidential virtual mental health counseling to all Iowans. 

COVID Recovery Iowa is for Iowans who have been impacted by both the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the aftermath of the derecho. In addition, the program offers virtual support groups, activities, and resources and information referral.

COVID Recovery Iowa is administered by the Iowa Department of Human Services, made possible with support from FEMA and is an extension of Project Recovery Iowa. COVID Recovery Iowa utilizes partnerships with a statewide network of service delivery providers to determine how best to serve each individual participant.

COVID Recovery Iowa can also be found on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.