The WHO Mental Health Initiative

WHO Special initiative for mental health (2019–2023).

Mental health conditions, such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, eating disorders, and schizophrenia, affect hundreds of millions of people worldwide. Poor mental health can have devastating effects on individuals, their families and their communities. It can lead to social isolation, reduced quality of life, missed work and school days, and even death. Mental health conditions can also lead to other health problems, such as substance abuse, physical health conditions, and an increased risk of suicide.

Mental health conditions also have an economic cost. People with mental health conditions often have difficulty finding and keeping work, and may require long-term care or additional support, resulting in increased health costs for individuals and their families, as well as for governments and employers. The estimated global economic loss due to mental health conditions was $2.5 trillion in 2010, with the greatest burden felt in low- and middle-income countries.

Universal Health Coverage for Mental Health THEORY OF CHANGE.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is committed to addressing the global burden of mental health conditions, and has launched the Mental Health Action Plan 2013-2020. This plan aims to reduce the number of people affected by mental health conditions, reduce the duration and disability associated with mental health conditions, and reduce the mortality due to suicide. The WHO also recognizes the importance of addressing human rights violations and promoting the recovery of people with mental health conditions.

The WHO Special Initiative for Mental Health focuses on developing and implementing evidence-based strategies, policies, and services that promote mental health and well-being, and reduce the burden of mental health conditions. This includes efforts to reduce stigma and discrimination, promote access to quality mental health services, and support people in their recovery.


To achieve the global goal of ensuring the highest standards of mental health and well-being, it is essential to address mental health conditions and ensure the rights of people with mental health conditions are respected. The WHO and other organizations are working to ensure that mental health is given the attention and resources it deserves.

Source _ WHO

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