8 January 2016: Mental health services are becoming more widely available than ever before to the Syrian people in spite of conflict in the country. Over the last two years, WHO has supported the decentralization of the mental health services in Syria, such that treatment and care are now available at primary care level. In the January issue of the WHO Bulletin, Dale Gavlak reports on how this was accomplished, and the impact on the people of Syria.
1 October 2015 – Following the release of WHO’s Mental Health Atlas 2014 global report, up-to-date country-specific mental health Atlas profiles are now available.
These profiles provide a snapshot of the reported level of resources and services available in each country, as well as the implementation status of policies, plans and laws.
9 September 2015 - Swallowing pesticides is among the most common means of suicide worldwide. Widespread use in India of pesticides in farming has led to particularly high rates of suicide in the country’s rural areas. This photo feature describes how a WHO-sponsored project in the state of Tamilnadu, southern India, helped reduce the number of suicides by limiting access to pesticides.
Mental health included in the UN Sustainable Development Goals
Promoting mental health and well-being, and the prevention and treatment of substance abuse, are integral parts of the Sustainable Development Agenda to transform our world by 2030 adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 25 September 2015. This is a belated but fitting recognition of the importance of these areas of health within global development and health priorities, as well as a significant departure from the Millennium Development Goals established in 2000.
In April 2016, the World Bank Group and the World Health Organization will co-host a high-level meeting on global mental health, with a focus on depression and anxiety, to coincide with the 2016 Spring Meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank Group.