Vastavam web: Mental health disorders are on the rise in every country in the world and could cost the global economy up to $16 trillion between 2010 and 2030 if a collective failure to respond is not addressed, according to an expert report on Tuesday. The “Lancet Commission” report by 28 global specialists in psychiatry, public health and neuroscience, as well as mental health patients and advocacy groups, said the growing crisis could cause lasting harm to people, communities and economies worldwide.
The wide-ranging report did not give the breakdown of the potential $16 trillion economic impact it estimated by 2030. “The situation is extremely bleak,” Patel, a professor at Harvard Medical School in the United States, told reporters. He said the burden of mental illness had risen “dramatically” worldwide in the past 25 years, partly due to societies ageing and more children surviving into adolescence, yet “no country is investing enough” to tackle the problem.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that around 300 million people worldwide have depression and 50 million have dementia. Schizophrenia is estimated to affect 23 million people, and bipolar disorder around 60 million. The Lancet report found that in many countries, people with common mental disorders such as depression, anxiety and schizophrenia routinely suffer gross human rights violations – including shackling, torture and imprisonment.
It called for a human rights-based approach to ensure that people with mental health conditions are not denied fundamental human rights, including access to employment, education and other core life experiences. It also recommended a wholesale shift to community-based care for mental health patients, with psychosocial treatments such as talking therapies being offered not just by medical professionals but also by community health workers, peers, teachers and the clergy.