Harv Rev Psychiatry. Published online Feb Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer. Correspondence: Dr. Email: ua. This is an open access article distributed under the Supplemental Terms and Conditions for iOpenAccess articles published in Informa Healthcare journals , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract Although mental disorders are a major public health problem, the development of mental health services has been a low priority everywhere, particularly in low- and middle-income countries.
Keywords: development, leadership, mental health systems, scaling up. Open in a separate window.
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In his statement of support for the WHO publication Mental Health and Development , the former Australian minister for international development noted that Australia is committed to reducing poverty and achieving sustainable development in developing countries, and improving responses to people with mental illness is an important building block towards achieving this … Unless the needs of people with disability, including those with mental illness, are met, it will not be possible to achieve the targets of the Millennium Development Goals by Figure 1. Structure of the CIMH mental health system development program.
As the then director of the WHO Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse noted: It is very important to have good, randomized, clinical trials providing evidence about the efficacy of new treatments but it is equally important to have research providing evidence that a mental health system in a given country, region or district is working better than another.
The networks should be across different institutions and teams, across different parts of the research system e. Strategic leadership, training, and skills development Within countries the IOMHS collaborating groups will contribute to strategic leadership and to shaping the national mental health systems research agenda.
User-researcher interaction It is essential that the users of the research results are engaged as early as possible in the research process. IOMHS collaborating groups have established links with key research users, particularly ministries of health and civil society and consumer and carer organizations. Research career development The establishment of mental health systems research, education, and development groups in key academic departments will open up career pathways that currently do not exist for mental health systems researchers, and will improve ability to compete for scarce research funds.
Training will contribute to building careers in mental health systems research. Ensuring political independence The establishment of IOMHS collaborating groups in influential academic institutions—which everywhere jealously guard their independence—will contribute to ensuring political independence. However, political independence does not mean political isolation. Cultural change A key component of necessary cultural change is the creation of a culture in which the production, dissemination, and use of high-quality research is valued as an integral part of the health system.
Knowledge should be publicly owned, widely disseminated, and shared, and should be used for public benefit. Building an open research culture is an essential and long-term objective. The journal is intended as the place to which mental health system researchers, Health Ministers' advisers, policy makers, mental health consultants advising countries on mental health system development, teachers in psychiatry, nursing, psychology, social work and public health courses, clinicians involved in mental health system reform, and others will turn for the latest research and policy information on how to build equitable, accessible, efficient, high quality mental health systems.
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