Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

WHO Finds Governments "Remiss" on Mental Disorders. (WHO News)

Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

WHO Finds Governments "Remiss" on Mental Disorders. (WHO News)

Article excerpt

On 4 October, WHO launched its annual World Health Report, this year devoted to mental health. The report culminates a series of WHO-sponsored activities on the topic -- including meetings of experts, the World Health Assembly, and World Health Day -- in what has been the organization's first "thematic" year in its 55-year history.

Subtitled Mental health: New understanding new hope, the report calls governments to task for not using the available "means and scientific knowledge to help people with mental disorders".

Speaking to the press at the launch of the report, WHO director-general Dr Gro Harlem Brundtland said it should help "break the vicious cycle of neglect and lack of funding and raise awareness of mental health issues at the highest level of decision-and policy-making". The data in the report, she said, presented a "staggering" toll: 450 million people currently afflicted with a mental or neurological disorder -- million of them with depression and 50 million with epilepsy -- plus a million successful and 10-20 million attempted suicides a year. …

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