Mental illness is a fatal illness. Surprisingly, mental health is grossly underfunded all over the world. Despite countries' economic strength, there are still no long-term and solution-driven results for addressing mental health. According to WHO reports, only one in every fifty people receives medical treatment for severe mental illnesses.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a global initiative to create a more equitable and sustainable world. According to the World Health Organization, "there can be no health or sustainable development without proper mental health." As a result, mental health is one of the most critical pillars in creating a sustainable world in the future. In short, if mental health is good, sustainability will follow naturally.
Positive Mental Health = Thriving Sustainability
According to the WHO’s decision-making body, ‘The World Health Assembly (WHA),’ mental health deserves to be at the top of the sustainability agenda because it affects people of all ages.
It means anybody can be diagnosed with a mental illness, which is directly proportionate to sustainable development. So, a similar amount of treatments, diagnoses, and awareness should help people overcome mental illness.
However, on the other hand, according to the WHO's 2020 Mental Health Atlas, only 23% of patients with mental illnesses have been integrated into healthcare systems in developing countries. This highlights the undeniable fact that the world's 280 million people suffering from depression have been kept away from receiving a proper diagnosis, treatment, and care. Moreover, up to 85% of people with mental illnesses are untreated. The numbers are shocking!
Such statistics are enough evidence to create a supportive culture free of the stigma that mental illness is incurable and encourage patients to seek help when they need it. It includes geography-specific mental health resources, proper diagnosis, care, medication, availability, accessibility, other requirements, and adequate support systems.
Global Action is Key to Both
Providers of mental health services cannot do it alone. Instead, it requires a strong global response. In this case, leading companies and legislative bodies should exert influence to promote cost-effective, widely accessible, and evidence-based treatments for mental health disorders.
Some low-cost solutions to this global problem will eradicate it and bring about long-term development to support this point. As a result, the solutions are as follows
- Improving social and economic environments as part of sustainable development
- Integrating mental health into general primary health care
- Providing appropriate care and treatment through trained and supervised community members
- Using technology to introduce the most up-to-date solutions for mental health disorders
Transformation is essential today, both technically and in terms of humanizing. Otherwise, sustainable development will be impossible to achieve unless the enormous challenge of mental health is addressed. Therefore, healthcare leaders will need to develop transitional plans to increase coverage in real-time to accomplish this. This should include proper diagnosis and progressive tracking of mental health treatments.