Psychotherapists register impacts of the COVID-19 lockdown on their patients SSRN Probst


Objective: This study evaluated whether and how psychotherapists register impacts of the measures of the Austrian government against COVID-19 (COVID-19 lockdown) on their patients.

Methods: A total of 1,547 psychotherapists participated in an online survey and 1,347 psychotherapists provided data relevant for the research question. Content analysis was applied and dichotomous codes (negative impact - positive impact) served as the basis to evaluate the answers.

Results: Solely negative effects were registered by 70.0% of the psychotherapists (especially fear, loneliness, and isolation), negative and positive effects by 16.3%, solely positive effects by 5.3%, and no effects by 8.5%.

Conclusions: Austrian psychotherapists register mainly negative but also some positive effects of the COVID-19 lockdown on their patients.

Keywords: Psychotherapy; COVID-19


Probst, Thomas and Kuska, Martin and Stippl, Peter and Pieh, Christoph, Psychotherapists Register Impacts of the COVID-19 Lockdown on Their Patients (April 20, 2020). Available at SSRN: or