Approach to Spanish TV Broadcasting Dealing with Mental Health Issues Related to Pandemic Lockdown


  • Antonio Sanjuán Pérez Universidade da Coruña
  • José Juan Videla Rodríguez Universidade da Coruña
  • Teresa Nozal Cantarero Universidade da Coruña
  • Sandra Martínez Costa



mental health, pandemic fatigue, Television, covid-19, content analysis


Despite the importance of mental health matters for people’s well-being and the essential role of television to help spread medical issues, our study shows that the media coverage of this subject has been poor and somehow trivial during the so-called “pandemic fatigue” in Spain. This research focuses on the 24-hour television broadcast of five channels throughout 16 months, coding the content to identify trends and to know how media covered mental health topics all along seven days in January 2021. The analysis reveals a trivial representation of the topic, including irrelevant references to mental health that may not help make visible problems such as depression, anxiety, or stress. Instead, there seems to be a lack of rigorous analysis of the mental health conditions arising after the pandemic. We can infer that private broadcasters have a more suitable approach when presenting data, describing people involved or taking advice from mental health professionals. Effective information on mental health requires deep messaging and medical recommendations or statements, but from this research, it turns out that there is a touch of frivolity in the way television approaches mental health issues.


Download data is not yet available.


Ayedee, Nishu and Manocha, Shanjai (2020). Role of media (Television) in creating a positive atmosphere in COVID-19 during lockdown in India. SSRN, Studies Research Network. ssrn.3605514

Balluerka, Nekane; Gómez, Juana; Hidalgo, María D.; Gorostiaga, Arantxa; Espada, José P.; Padilla, José L., and Santed, Miguel Á. (2020). Las consecuencias psicológicas de la COVID-19 y el confinamiento (The psychological consequences of COVID-19 and lockdown). Servicio de Publicaciones de la Universidad del País Vasco Euskal Herriko Unibertsitateko Argitalpen Zerbitzua.

Barlovento Comunicación (2021). Análisis televisivos 2021.

Berelson, Bernard R.; Lazarsfeld, Paul F., and McPhee, William N. (1954) Voting. A study of opinion formation in a presidential campaign. The University of Chicago Press.

Binderkrantz, Anne S. (2019). Interest group representation and framing in the media: A policy area perspective. Journal of Public Affairs, 20(1) [e2009], 1-10.

Cacciatore, Michael A.; Scheufele, Dietram A., and Iyengar, Shanto (2016). The end of framing as we know it… and the future of media effects. Mass Communication and Society, 19(1), 7-23. 0/15205436.2015.1068811

Cassilo, David (2022). Royce White, DeMar DeRozan and media framing of mental health in the NBA. Communication & Sport, 10((1).

Centro de Investigaciones Sociológicas (CIS) (2020). Efectos y consecuencias del Coronavirus I.

Close Koenig, Tricia; Saward, Angela, and Borge, Jessica (2020). Television, an instrument for and a mirror of health and health services. VIEW Journal of European Television History and Culture, 9(18), 1-6.

Crow, Deserai A. and Lawlor, Andrea (2016). Media in the policy process: Using framing and narratives to understand policy influences. Review of Policy Research, 33(5), 472-491.

Edelstein, Alex S. (1993). Thinking about the criterion variable in agenda-setting research. Journal of Communication, 43(2), 85-99.

Entman Robert M. (1993). Framing towards clarification of a fractured paradigm. Journal of Communication, 43(4), 51-58. tb01304.x

Goffman, Erving (2006). Frame analysis. Los marcos de la experiencia (1st ed.). Centro de Investigaciones Sociológicas (CIS), Siglo XXI Editores.

Hecht, Marlene; Kloß, Andrea, and Bartsch, Anne (2021). Stopping the stigma. How empathy and reflectiveness can help reduce mental health stigma. Media Psychology, 10.1080/15213269.2021.1963991

Instituto de Salud Carlos III (ISCIII) (May 2020-October 2021). Monitorización del comportamiento y las actitudes de la población relacionadas con la COVID-19 en España. Estudio COSMO-Spain.

Interterritorial Council of the National Health System (16 December 2020). Recommendations on communication strategies against pandemic fatigue.

Koon, Adam; Hawkins, Benjamin, and Mayhew, Susannah (2016). Framing and the health policy process: A scoping review. Health Policy and Planning, 31(6), 801-816.

Lazarsfeld, Paul F.; Berelson, Bernard, and Gaudet, Hazel (2021). The people’s choice. How the voter makes up his mind in a presidential campaign. Columbia University Press.

Lovibond, Peter F. and Lovibond, Sabina H. (1995). The structure of negative emotional states: Comparison of the depression anxiety stress scales (DASS) with the beck depression and anxiety inventories. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 33(3), 335-343.

Maxfield, Molly and Pituch, Keenan (2020). COVID-19 worry, mental health indicators, and preparedness for future care needs across the adult lifespan. Aging & Mental Health, 25(7), 1273-1280.

McCombs, Maxwell E. and Shaw, Donald L. (1972). The agenda setting function of the media. Public Opinion Quarterly, 36(2), 176-187.

McConnell, Elizabeth A.; Birkett, Michelle A., and Mustanski, Brian (2015). Typologies of social support and associations with mental health outcomes among LGBT youth. LGBT Health, 2(1), 55-61.

McQuail, Denis (2005). McQuail’s mass communication theory. SAGE Publications.

Meadows, Charles W.; Meadows, Cui Z.; Tang, Lu, and Liu, Wenlin (2019). Unraveling public health crises across stages: Understanding Twitter emotions and message types during the California measles outbreak. Communication Studies, 70(4), 453-469.

Nagler, Rebekah H.; Bigman, Cabral A.; Ramanadhan, Shoba; Ramamurthi, Divya, and Viswanath, Katam (2016). Prevalence and framing of health disparities in local print news: Implications for multilevel interventions to address cancer inequalities. Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention, 25(4), 603–612.

Noëlle-Neumann, Elisabeth (1995). La espiral del silencio. Opinión pública. Nuestra piel social. Paidós.

Paterson, Brodie (2006). Newspaper representations of mental illness and the impact of the reporting of ‘events’ on social policy: The ‘framing’ of Isabel Schwarz and Jonathan Zito. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, 13(3), June 2006, 294-300.

Reynolds, Barbara and Seeger, Matthew W. (2005). Crisis and emergency risk communication as an integrative model. Journal of Health Communication, 10(1), 43-55.

Rossi, Rodolfo; Socci, Valentina; Pacitti, Francesca; Mensi, Sonia; Marco, Antinisca di; Siracusano, Alberto, and Lorenzo, Giorgio di (8 December 2020). Mental health outcomes among healthcare workers and the general population during the COVID-19 in Italy. Frontiers in Psychologie, 11(608986).

Sameer, Aga S.; Khan, Muhammad A.; Nissar, Saniya, and Banday, Mujeeb Z. (2020). Assessment of mental health and various coping strategies among general population living under imposed COVID-lockdown across world: Across-sectional study. Ethics Medicine & Public Health, 15(100571).

Scheufele, Dietram (1999). Framing as a theory of media effects. Journal of Communication, 49(1), 103-122.

Scheufele, Dietram A. and Iyengar, Shanto (2014). The state of framing research: A call for new directions. In K. Kensky and K. H. Jamienson (Ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Political Communication (pp. 1-18). Oxford Handbooks Online. Oxford University Press

Scheufele, Dietram and Tewksbury, David (2007). Framing, agenda setting, and priming: The evolution of three media effects models. Journal of Communication, 57(1), 9-20.

Villagonzalo, Kristi-Ann; Arnold, Chelsea; Farhall, John; Rossell, Susan L.; Foley, Fiona, and Thomas, Neil (2019). Predictors of overall and mental health-related Internet use in adults with psychosis. Psychiatry Research, 278, 12-18.

Vyncke, Bart and Gorp, Baldwin van (2018). An experimental examination of the effectiveness of framing strategies to reduce mental health stigma. Journal of Health Communication. International Perspectives, 23(10-11), 899-908.

World Health Organization (WHO) (October 2020). Pandemic fatigue. Reinvigorating the public to prevent COVID-19. Policy framework for supporting pandemic prevention and management. WHO Regional Office for Europe.

Zhong, Bu; Huang, Yakun, and Liu, Qian (January 2021). Mental health toll from the coronavirus: Social media usage reveals Wuhan residents’ depression and secondary trauma in the COVID-19 outbreak. Computers in Human Behavior, 114(106524). Epub 2020 Aug 15.




How to Cite

Sanjuán Pérez, A., Videla Rodríguez, J. J., Nozal Cantarero, T., & Martínez Costa, S. (2022). Approach to Spanish TV Broadcasting Dealing with Mental Health Issues Related to Pandemic Lockdown. Tripodos, (52), 35–50.

Similar Articles

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 > >> 

You may also start an advanced similarity search for this article.