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Lived Experience and Co-Production: A Q&A with Dr Lindsay Dewa

This past month, the COVID-Minds Network has been discussing how researchers can involve people with lived experience of mental health difficulties in their studies. Dr Lindsay Dewa, a Research Fellow in Public Health at Imperial College London, is running a mixed methods study examining mental health status and coping strategies among young people in the UK in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. She and her colleagues made sure their study, “Covid-19 Coping in Young People” (CCopeY), was co-produced with young people from start to finish.

Below, she describes the process, what she learned, and how working with young people strengthened her research.

How did you involve people with mental health expertise in your study?

Our goal was to build upon two recent surveys, YoungMinds and another by the Academy of Medical Science and the mental health research charity, MQ. We wanted young people to fully infl