Covid-19: children’s mental health under scrutiny by a large study by Public Health France

In France, a large study has been launched among children between the ages of 3 and 11 to study their mental health more than two years after the pandemic. (© News Bordeaux / Jonas Denis)

This is the first time at the national level. Public Health France launches an extensive survey this Monday, May 2, 2022 to understand what it is the mental health of children.

A question all the more legitimate since “the health crisis has probably had harmful effects on their mental health” estimates the team responsible for the project called Enabee.

Objective: to enable measure and describe the different dimensions of well-being and the difficulties encounteredand to identify the circumstances, determinants and impacts on children’s quality of life, ”according to the national public health agency.

Who participates in the study?

Thereby, from May to June 2022it will concern the Enabee study 30,000 children aged 3 to 11in France.

It will be targeted of children from kindergarten to CM2in public or private schools under contract with National Education, in metropolitan France and in the Departments and Overseas Regions (DROM).

The study is conducted on a sample of over 30,000 children randomly selected from national education lists.

Team responsible for the Enabee study

How will it go?

First 600 schools will be drawn, then classes and finally students, explains Public Health France in several flyers. An information letter will be sent to all those selected to participate.

Thus, from the CP to the CM2, the investigators will come to the classroom, so that the students can fill out the questionnaires individually, for about thirty minutes. Teachers will also have to fill in one for each of their students participating in the study, via the internet (3 minutes), as well as for the parents of the children concerned, both by telephone and via the internet (they count about thirty minutes).

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For kindergarten children, “only parents and teachers will be questioned,” assures Public Health France.

The health, the difficulties of the child or the living environment will be highlighted through these questionnaires.

To do what?

Thus, “Health indicators for children aged 3 to 11” will be collected which will make it possible to produce (anonymous) results with a view to “providing an overview of the mental health status of children in France”.

Enabee findings will contribute to a better understanding of the mental health status and well-being of children nationwide. They will help guide and promote prevention, care and support actions for children in France.

The first results should be released at the end of 2022. «Enabee is not an individual diagnostic study of every child, explains Santé Publique France, the results will not be analyzed at the school level or for each child, but only on a national scale. “

Already last January a pilot survey was launched with around 1,800 children, in 19 schools of the academies of Créteil and Tours-Orléans, to test the system. The results obtained “showed strong support from school heads, teachers and children for this large-scale system,” according to the public health agency.

Practical information. A free phone number (08 00 94 25 91) and an e-mail address (contact@enabee.fr) is available to answer further questions from participants. Parents who do not wish to participate in their child must express their refusal on 0800 94 25 91 or by e-mail to dpo@santepubliquefrance.fr, specifying in the subject of the e-mail “Enabee – opposition”.

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