Mental Health

Disability inclusion resources from around the world

Library > Subjects > Mental Health

This page has curated news on Mental Health. There are resources from 23 countries and regions, with a total of 82 links.

Highlights

From International News:

World Mental Health Report “Stigma, discrimination and human rights violations against people with mental health conditions are widespread in communities and care systems everywhere. And in all countries, it is the poorest and most disadvantaged in society who are at greater risk of mental ill-health and who are also the least likely to receive adequate services.” (2022, WHO)

Mental health, human rights and legislation: guidance and practice:

“Mental health is growing as a public health priority and human rights imperative, and an increasing number of countries are wishing to adopt or reform legislation related to mental health. However, laws on mental health, currently often fail to address discrimination and human rights violations including in mental health care settings.” (2023, WHO)

Decolonising global mental health: the role of Mad Studies (2023, Global Mental Health) See also discussion on the Debrief.

The Virtual Asylum Replacing Mental Healthcare (2022, Tech Policy Press)

From Australia:

Mental distress is much worse for people with disabilities, and many health professionals don't know how to help.

“Someone may present to a disability-specific health service, and be turned away due to a co-occuring mental health difficulty. They might then present to a mental health service and be turned away due to having a disability.” (2022, the Conversation)

From Europe:

Mental health of people with intellectual disabilities and family members: “Mental health and intellectual disabilities diagnoses are being used to deprive people of their right to decide about their lives.” (2023, Inclusion Europe)

From Ghana:

Chaining People with Mental Health Conditions Persists Visits to prayer camps and healing centers see “people were chained or confined in small cages, in some cases for more than seven months.” (2022, Human Rights Watch)

From Kenya:

Kenya’s troubled 60-year mental health journey from colonial institutions and laws to those making change today. (2023, The Nation)

From Latin America and the Caribbean:

Towards Mad Justice and Reparation (In Spanish, 2023, RedEsfera)

Resources by country:

Global

International News

Workplace Wellness Programs Have Little Benefit, Study Finds

“The study, published this month in Industrial Relations Journal, considered the outcomes of 90 different interventions and found a single notable exception: Workers who were given the opportunity to do charity or volunteer work did seem to have improved well-being.” (Jan, NYT)

Mental Health and Wellbeing at Work Policy Review (2023, International Organisation of Employers)

Mental Health and Wellbeing at Work Policy Review (2023, International Organisation of Employers)

WhatWENeed Campaign 2023 “one of our yearly advocacy instruments to continually challenge the globalizing of psychiatry and its institutions and their influence on shaping of international policies” (2023, TCI Global)

Mental health, human rights and legislation: guidance and practice:

“Mental health is growing as a public health priority and human rights imperative, and an increasing number of countries are wishing to adopt or reform legislation related to mental health. However, laws on mental health, currently often fail to address discrimination and human rights violations including in mental health care settings.” (2023, WHO)

Preventing suicide: a resource for media professionals. (2023, WHO)

What interventions work to address trauma among people with intellectual disabilities? Evidence brief. (2023, Disability Evidence Portal)

Not all mental health apps are helpful. Experts explain the risks, and how to choose one wisely (2023, The Conversation)

Mental Health & Psychosocial Support Good Practice Guide: “this guidance helps all actors engaged in emergency response to ensure that their MHPSS activities are inclusive” (2023, CBM Global)

‘It’s a huge sign of progress’: the battle to decriminalise suicide. “In at least 17 countries, suicide remains a criminal offence – a ‘huge barrier’ to mental health care. As Ghana becomes one of four countries to overturn its law in a year, others could follow” (2023, the Guardian)

Mental health and lived experience: In global mental health, “lived experience expertise ought to be equally compensated for based on equal pay for equal work.” (2023, Global Mental Health)

To chat or bot to chat: Ethical issues with using chatbots in mental health (2023, Digital Health)

Decolonising global mental health: the role of Mad Studies (2023, Global Mental Health) See also discussion on the Debrief.

The Drawbacks and Downsides of Online Therapy

“In the past year, a flurry of reports have found that some of the most recognizable names in the industry have repeatedly engaged in creepy and harmful data-sharing practices that treat people in need of help as prospective sources of profit instead of as patients. Taken together, the reports reveal a dangerous cocktail of tech solutionism, abuse of consumer trust, and regulatory failure that puts highly vulnerable people at risk.” (2023, Business Insider)

Reprioritising global mental health: psychoses in sub-Saharan Africa. “Our findings point to the need not only for more research on psychoses in sub-Saharan Africa, but also for more representation and leadership in the conduct of research and in international priority-setting more broadly—especially by people with lived experience from diverse backgrounds.” (2023, International Journal of Mental Health Systems.)

Anxiety and Depression Signs Among Adolescents in 26 Low- and Middle-Income Countries: “Compared to adolescents without functional difficulties, those with difficulties in one or more domains were three times more likely to have signs of depression and anxiety.” (2023, Journal of Adolescent Health)

Controversy erupts over non-consensual AI mental health experiment. “Koko let 4,000 people get therapeutic help from GPT-3 without telling them first.” (2023, Ars Technica)

BasicNeeds Network Launch: bringing together 100+ years of mental health implementation experience. (2023, CBM UK)

The Virtual Asylum Replacing Mental Healthcare (2022, Tech Policy Press)

An issue on Mental Health & Climate Justice including research on women with psychosocial disabilities in intersecting disasters and climate change. (2022, Mariwala Health Initiative Journal)

IASC Guidance, Addressing Suicide in Humanitarian Settings. (2022, IASC)

Mental Health Apps Are Not Keeping Your Data Safe “With little regulation and sometimes outright deception, the possibility of discrimination and other “data harms” is high” (2022, Scientific American)

The future of mental health care might lie beyond psychiatry: “Poor countries are developing a new paradigm of mental health care.” (2022, Vox)

How climate change affects mental health highlighting dimensions of concern. (2022, Wellcome)

Launch of the report of the Lancet Commission On Ending Stigma and Discrimination in Mental Health. (2022, United for Global Mental Health)

Guidelines on mental health at work: “evidence-based recommendations to promote mental health, prevent mental health conditions, and enable people living with mental health conditions to participate and thrive in work.” (2022, WHO)

The story of depression and how we treat it a review of A Cure for Darkness, a new book which “takes a more global and socioeconomically inclusive approach to studying depression”. (2022, Africa is a Country)

World Mental Health Report “Stigma, discrimination and human rights violations against people with mental health conditions are widespread in communities and care systems everywhere. And in all countries, it is the poorest and most disadvantaged in society who are at greater risk of mental ill-health and who are also the least likely to receive adequate services.” (2022, WHO)

Hope, empowerment, action: a new series dedicated to suicide prevention:

“To begin with, we need to abandon the myth that every suicide is the outcome of 'mental illness'. And we must reckon with the deep socioeconomic factors that make suicide one of the biggest public health challenges of our time.” (2022, Sanity by Tanmoy)

Mental Health Apps Like BetterHelp Are a Privacy Nightmare, Mozilla Says. (2022, Gizmodo)

COVID-19 pandemic triggers 25% increase in prevalence of anxiety and depression worldwide (2022, WHO)

A briefing on Financing Mental Health For All as part of universal healthcare: “the opportunity for once-in-a-generation change”. (2022, United for Global Mental Health)

Entry points for mental health and wellbeing a brief on how international cooperation can incorporate mental health. (2022, Bond)

Mental health support for children and adolescents with hearing loss scoping review (2022, BJPsych)

Digital Futures in Mind Reflecting on Technological Experiments in Mental Health & Crisis Support:

The “paradigm of advocating for and developing algorithmic mental health tools has in turn exacerbated harms done to those in crisis, by not recognising either the particularities of their circumstances, or the systemic stigma these systems can reinforce. In this report, the authors present an alternative framework in which every step of the design, training, implementation and regulation of algorithmic healthcare systems would be done with the direct involvement of people who know the worst things that these systems can do, because they’ve lived it.” (link to pdf, 2022)

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Africa

Ghana

Invest More in Mental Health Services New Video Shows People Living Rich Lives with Community Support. (2023, Human Rights Watch)

A Path to Belonging for People with Psychosocial Disabilities in Ghana | Human Rights Watch Human Rights Watch goes back to a “prayer camp” to find someone still shackled one year after their previous visit:

‘Pamela was just as I last saw her, only emaciated, her eyes enormous on her gaunt face. When I asked her about life at the camp, her face crumpled, and she started to cry. “They don’t allow us to go to church,” she said. “That pains me. I want to go to church.” I was astounded: this was a prayer camp after all. A staff member told her: “But look at you, Pamela. How can I allow you to go to church?”’ (2023, Human Rights Watch)

End Chaining for Mental Health Conditions “Ghana’s 2017 ban on shackling people with psychosocial disabilities – or mental health conditions – has not halted the practice, Human Rights Watch said today. The government has not adequately resourced the enforcement mechanisms to monitor compliance by faith-based centers where people are being held in chains and assist those currently being unlawfully detained.” (2023, Human Rights Watch)

Chaining People with Mental Health Conditions Persists Visits to prayer camps and healing centers see “people were chained or confined in small cages, in some cases for more than seven months.” (2022, Human Rights Watch)

A policy brief on addressing mental health needs of deaf people (2022, Ghana National Association of the Deaf)

Mental Health Quarters is a youtube channel on mental health advocacy. (2022)

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Kenya

Kenya’s troubled 60-year mental health journey from colonial institutions and laws to those making change today. (2023, The Nation)

Alienation in three parts: mental health in Kenyan women activists (2022, ROAPE)

Kenya Mental Health Investment Case 2021 Providing Evidence for the Long-Term Health, Social and Economic Benefits of Investment in Mental Health.

“Kenya has a standalone mental health policy, and efforts to review the outdated mental health act are on-going. [But] Mental health services are scarce and inaccessible, the mental health workforce is limited, and budgetary allocation to mental health is inadequate.” (2022, Ministry of Health)

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Somalia

A new plan to tackle trauma in Somalia after 30 years of ‘shared distress’ (2023, The New Humanitarian)

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South Africa

Large mental health study finds 20-30% of students at risk (2022, Mail and Guardian)

A retrospective study exploring how South African newspapers framed Schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders over an 11-year period (2004–2014). (2022, BMC Psychiatry)

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Asia

Afghanistan

Kabul’s Mental Health Crisis Spirals Out of Control “The Taliban-led government has little expertise in dealing with long-standing issues in psychological treatment”. (2023, New Lines Magazine)

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Bangladesh

Prevalence and factors associated with depression, anxiety, and stress among people with disabilities during COVID-19 pandemic in Bangladesh: A cross-sectional study.

“The prevalence was found to be 65.7% for depression, 78.5% for anxiety, and 61.4% for stress, respectively. Several factors were identified as associated with these mental health issues, including gender (male), marital status (being married), low education levels, multiple impairments, comorbid medical illnesses, poor sleep quality, rural residency, hearing disability, disability onset later in life, and testing positive for COVID-19.” (2023, Plos One)

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China

For people with mental health conditions finding work remains a challenge. (2022, Sixth Tone)

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India

Laws, Health Policy Fail To Stem India’s Tsunami Of Mental Health, As Stress Claims Victims, Cuts Productivity. (2023, Article 14)

‘A lifeline’: mental health camps bring peace of mind to thousands in rural Assam. (2023, the Guardian)

Mental justice: Addressing the mental health of de-notified tribes. (2023, IDR)

The Long-Run Effects of Psychotherapy on Depression, Beliefs and Economic Outcomes:

“We revisit two clinical trials that randomized depressed adults in India (n=775) to a brief course of psychotherapy or a control condition. Four to five years later, the treatment group was 11 percentage points less likely to be depressed than the control group. The more effective intervention averted 9 months of depression on average over five years and cost only $66 per recipient.” (link to pdf, 2022, Bhat et al)

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Indonesia

Indonesia free from pasung: a policy analysis. “Many people with mental illnesses remain isolated, chained, and inside cages, called Pasung in Indonesia”:

“Pasung policy has generated a sense of awareness but the different directions and ambiguous messaging across all stakeholders, including policy actors, has created a lack of clarity about institutions’ roles and responsibilities in the implementation process, as well as accountability for outcomes.” (2023, International Journal of Mental Health Systems.)

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Jordan

‘Amman is a prison’: Rise in suicides highlights mental health crisis in Jordan: ‘Instead of addressing the structural problems, the government is trying to punish and repress the symptoms of the crisis.’ (2022, The New Humanitarian)

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Myanmar

Assessment of Services for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, Gender-Based Violence, and Mental Health and Psychosocial Support for persons with disabilities, in selected states. (2023, UNFPA)

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Europe

Europe

Mental health of people with intellectual disabilities and family members: “Mental health and intellectual disabilities diagnoses are being used to deprive people of their right to decide about their lives.” (2023, Inclusion Europe)

Joint statement welcoming the suspension of the adoption of the draft Additional Protocol to the Oviedo Convention (2022, EDF) See more from Human Rights Watch.

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Belgium

A Radical Experiment in Mental Health Care, Tested Over Centuries. “In the Belgian town of Geel, families have long taken in people with psychiatric conditions. Could this approach work elsewhere?” (2023, New York Times)

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Denmark

“Mental health is declining in Denmark” and the plan to tackle the inefficiencies in the mental healthcare system through the next ten years. (2022, Unbias the News)

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Finland

Vastaamo hacking suspect arrested in France. “French police arrested a suspect Friday who is allegedly connected to the notorious cyber attack against Finnish psychotherapy center Vastaamo in 2018.” (2023, TechTarget)

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Russia

Tedtalk on How to alter the perception of mental health care in Russia “During the Soviet Union era, therapy was often used as a tool of political oppression. Since then, Russia has seen major reforms in mental health care -- but stigmas and distrust for the practice still live on.” (2022, TED)

Mental Health Crisis Looms in Russia as Sanctions Fuel Drug Shortages, Job Losses (2022, The Moscow Times)

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United Kingdom

Mad World: The Politics of Mental Health a book by Micha Frazer-Carroll. (2023, Pluto Press)

A toolkit to support understanding and supporting mental health in infancy and early childhood. (2023, UNICEF)

Autistic people are six times more likely to attempt suicide – poor mental health support may be to blame (2022, The Conversation)

The Guardian view on mental health privatisation: unsafe spaces. “Businesses that fail patients while making profit margins of 15%-20% are no substitute for investment in the NHS” (2022, the Guardian)

A critique of digital mental health via assessing the psychodigitalisation of the COVID-19 crisis (2022, Psychotherapy and Politics International)

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North America

United States

Why addiction should be classified as a disability. “How Treating Addiction as a Disability Could Transform Treatment” (2023, Slate)

Advocates Fear The Impact Of NYC’s Involuntary Hospitalization Plan. (2022, Huffington Post) See also an extended take on the push to expand involuntary treatment (Mad in America).

Doctors Gave Her Antipsychotics. She Decided to Live With Her Voices: “A new movement wants to shift mainstream thinking away from medication and toward greater acceptance.” (2022, New York Times)

This Teen Shared Her Troubles With a Robot. Could AI ‘Chatbots’ Solve the Youth Mental Health Crisis? “The pandemic hit and this technology basically skyrocketed. Everywhere I turn now there’s a new chatbot promising to deliver new things,” (2022, 74 Million)

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Oceania

Australia

Police should not be involved in mental health incidents. “They can escalate the situation and mental distress, according to new research for the first time led by Australians with lived experience.” (2023, the Guardian)

In mental health units, women are drugged up, dehydrated and retraumatised. “Some say they're leaving facilities in a worse condition than when they arrived, having reported sexual assault or discrimination. Many report being administered high dosages of medication without any support on release, while some say they were even denied adequate water.” (2023, ABC News)

People living inside our mental health system must not be left outside its reform. “For too long, people with lived experience of mental health have been excluded from policy discussions,” (2023, Independent Australia)

As Australia’s human rights record comes under scrutiny, here is a missing piece in mental health reforms. (2023, Croakey Health Media)

Mental distress is much worse for people with disabilities, and many health professionals don't know how to help.

“Someone may present to a disability-specific health service, and be turned away due to a co-occuring mental health difficulty. They might then present to a mental health service and be turned away due to having a disability.” (2022, the Conversation)

More than 1,200 people are detained indefinitely with no criminal conviction. “People detained indefinitely without conviction are most commonly those who are found unfit to plead after being charged with a criminal offence, or who are found not guilty because of a mental impairment.” See more in how advocates have responded. (2022, the Guardian)

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New Zealand

Unaffordable home heating increases risk of severe mental distress. (2023, PHCC)

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