This briefing was based on published research by Eaton J, McCay L,
Semrau M, Chatterjee S, Baingana F, Araya R, Ntulo C, Thornicroft G,
Saxena, S. Scaling up of services for mental health in low-income and
middle-income countries. Lancet (2011) 378:1592-1603.
There is a well-documented gap between mental health needs and available
care, and a strong moral and economic case for investing in services to
close this gap. However, while there is now a strong evidence-base, for
there to be a significant global impact, mental health initiatives need
to be planned and developed in a strategic way that will enable
significant scaling up of services.
Mental illness represents one of the highest burden of all disease, and
is a major factor in perpetuating poverty. Currently, around 80% of
people in low-income countries do not receive treatment that would
effectively reduce impairment.
There are many diverse examples of mental health programmes offering
services, including in Low and Middle-Income Countries (LAMICs), but
although many are doing good work, few are evaluated, remaining hidden
Although a sound evidence base now exists, and new resources are
available, this is not yet being accessed by service implementers.
The findings propose the scaling up of mental health services in an
inclusive, systematic and strategic manner that requires strong advocacy
for financial commitment.
Eaton, J.; McCay, L.; Semrau, M.; Chatterjee, S.; Baingana, F.; Araya, R.; Ntulo, C.; Thornicroft, G.; Saxena, S. PRIME Policy Brief 2. Scale up of services for mental health in low-income and middle-income countries. PRIME, University of Cape Town, Rondebosch, South Africa (2013) 4 pp.
PRIME Policy Brief 2. Scale up of services for mental health in low-income and middle-income countries