Medical students in Lebanon face huge challenges at the expense of their mental health. The vast majority need mental health services but most cannot afford it or would not seek it due to stigma. In face of such adversity, shouldn't more attention be given to the health of future healthcare professionals?
Medical students are an at-risk population to develop mental health disorders, especially students in Lebanon who are facing constant additional stress due to the volatile situation in the country. The present study used the APA’s DSM-5 Self-Rated Level 1 Cross-Cutting Symptom Measure – Adult to screen for psychiatric symptoms in 12 different domains. Out of the sample of 364 students from all universities in Lebanon, only 5.2% had already a psychiatric diagnosis. Of the non-diagnosed subpopulation, a massive percentage of 92.75% screened positive and subsequently, were in need of further mental health evaluation. Roughly half of the participants described the existence of barriers for them to seek mental health services, finances and stigma being major reasons. Predictors of a more severe screen were being from a private university and previously being bullied. The situation in medical schools in Lebanon is profoundly alarming. Shouldn’t the health of future healthcare providers be a priority?