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WHO report on mental disorders will help countries reshape health policies

04-21-17 Category: Mental Health

WHO report on mental disorders will help countries reshape health policies

A recent report by the World Health Organization (WHO) on the global prevalence of mental health disorders like depression and anxiety and subsequent health loss arising out of them should be enough to give sleepless nights to the American policymakers and health care givers. Depression and anxiety account for major public health concern in the U.S.

The report by the WHO will help countries in planning and evaluating their health policies. Moreover, such periodic reports are desirable as they can help countries in understanding how common these mental health conditions are across the world, and where each country stands vis-à-vis the rest. Studying these systematic reports will help in bridging the gap between the current and the future mental health programs. Common psychological disorders, according to the report, include two main diagnostic categories – depression and anxiety.


The figures quoted by the WHO are startling, but one should understand that a host of reasons influences the depression level of the people. Usually, depression is a result of a combination of factors, such as genetic, biological, psychological and environmental.

Depression is characterized by sadness, loss of interest in pleasurable activities, guilt-feeling, low self-esteem, troubled sleep, loss of appetite, a perpetual feeling of fatigue, poor concentration, etc. It is paramount to address this disorder at the onset because chronic and severe depression can even cause suicidal tendencies.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in every six adults in the U.S. experience depression at some point in their lives. Depression affects 16 million U.S. adults each year, states the CDC.

According to the WHO report, 5.9 percent American population suffers from depressive disorders. The country that tops the list is Ukraine where 6.3 percent of the population suffers from depression. The country with the lowest depression level is Solomon Islands at 2.9 percent.

Anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorders refer to a cluster of mental disorders marked by fear, feelings of anxiety and stress, among others. Primarily categorized into GAD, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, phobias, OCD and PTSD, anxiety disorders need ardent attention to heal.

Coming to the report, Brazil tops the list of nations, with 9.3 percent of the population suffering from anxiety disorders. In the U.S., 6.3 percent population suffers from anxiety disorders. The country blessed with the lowest anxiety disorder level is Vietnam where only 2.2 percent of the population suffers from the mental problem.

Although the size of the population and the country matters a lot, the percentage also indicates the state of mental health among the people in any country. These estimates, an accrual of accurate and bona fide information about general population affected by different diseases, including psychological conditions, are critical for devising key health policies in a country.

Dealing with mental health conditions

Mental health conditions can be a huge burden on any individual, but it is not the end of the road. With timely intervention, any mental health condition, including depression and anxiety, is treatable and one can gain long-term recovery. As per the WHO, the governments need to increase the share of the budget allotted for mental health as the present allocation is not enough to fight the problem.

Sovereign Heath offers comprehensive treatment for most mental health conditions in state-of-the-art centers across the country. If you or a loved one is suffering from depression and you are looking for depression treatment centers, call at our helpline number 866-698-4295 or chat online for immediate assistance. Whether it is residential depression treatment centers or any other information you are looking for, our experts can help you with all the details.

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