WHO: The cost of treating mental disorders is $ 3 per person per year

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Last reviewed: 16.05.2018

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11 October 2011, 19:57

The calculations of WHO experts showed that the cost of treating mental disorders of the world's population is about $ 3 per person per year.

WHO calls on the authorities of all countries of the world to expand the quality of medical services for people who suffer from mental and neurological diseases.

The survey of the World Health Organization "Atlas of Mental Health" analyzes data from 184 countries. The authors of the study argue that every fourth person needs medical psychological assistance in connection with a mental disorder. However, the cost of treating these diseases per capita is about $ 3 per year, and in countries of the third world this amount can reach 25 cents.

Lack of funding is not the only problem, says the director of the Department of Mental Health Shekhar Saksen. In the countries of the third world there is an acute shortage of specialists in the field of psychiatry and psychology.

"For example, in Africa there are countries with a population of 9 million residents and only one psychiatrist ... And in Asia there is a country with a population of 29 million people and two psychiatrists. While in rich countries the number of psychiatrists per 100 000 population is 150 times greater "

According to the report, in Europe and North America only 50% of the population has access to the treatment of mental illness.

The authors of the study say that most of the money that is intended for the treatment of mental illnesses is spent not long-term treatment of patients in psychiatric hospitals. Such use of scarce means is extremely inefficient. Shehar Saxen calls on the governments of countries to begin redistributing money in favor of providing primary psychiatric and psychological assistance, rather than expensive treatment in psychiatric hospitals.

The "Atlas of Mental Health" describes a program for training and improving the skills of general practitioners, nurses in the field of mental health, which will make it possible to reduce the burden on narrow specialists.

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