Reminds that millions of people face grief for lost family members and friends, which many do Concerned about job security, And older people may experience isolation and loneliness, Mr. Guterres said that “without prescribed measures, the effects of mental health could be far more lasting than the epidemic.”
Children ‘isolated and miserable’
In his message for the day, the head of the UN also raised it Children and adolescents may “feel isolated and saddened” and call for action to eliminate inequalities in access to mental health care.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), about 20 percent of the world’s children and adolescents have a mental health condition and suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15-29 year olds.
Earlier in the week, the United Nations children’s agency, UNICEF, called for more investment in children’s mental health.
The latest version of the agency’s flagship report, The State of the World’s Children, highlights that even before the crisis, children and young people were carrying the burden of mental health conditions, and without significant investment in tackling them.
The last 18 months have been difficult for children, said Henrietta Four, executive director of UNICEF.
Inequality in access to treatment
“In high-income countries, more than 75 percent of people with depression report that they do not receive adequate care, and in low- and middle-income countries, more than 75 percent of mental health patients receive no treatment,” Guterres said.
Indicates chronic under-investment as a major factor The government spends just over 2 percent of their health budget on mental healthThe UN chief said it was simply “unacceptable”.
Finally acknowledging that “there can be no health without mental health”, he noted that member countries have approved the WHO’s updated Comprehensive Mental Health Action Plan.
In 2019, the UN health agency launched the WHO’s Special Initiative for Mental Health (2019-2023): universal health coverage for mental health, providing services to 100 million people to ensure quality and affordable care for mental health conditions in 12 priority countries.
During the World Health Summit in May 2021, governments around the world recognized the need to increase quality mental health care at all levels, and some countries found new ways to provide mental health care to their populations.
“The United Nations family, in partnership with the global mental health community, is introducing new guidelines and developing new tools to improve mental health,” he said. Guterres added.
Long way to go
“These are positive steps, but we have a long way to go,” he concluded. Ensure quality mental health care for all people, everywhere”