Vous êtes dans : Accueil > Actualités > Vues d'ailleurs > Monde : Les personnes ayant des problèmes de santé mentale ont besoin d’un accès aux soins

Monde : Les personnes ayant des problèmes de santé mentale ont besoin d’un accès aux soins

le 13 avril 2017

[Huffington Post] Alors que ceux d’entre nous qui s’intéressent à la santé mentale ont une cause à célébrer, nous ne pouvons pas nous reposer sur nos lauriers car, pour de nombreuses personnes souffrant de problèmes de santé mentale, elles se heurtent à une lutte continue pour l’accès à la santé. (article en anglais)

Many people will be relieved that Congress did not repeal the Affordable Care Act. Whilst those of us with an interest in mental health have a cause to celebrate we cannot rest on our laurels because for many people with mental health conditions face a continuous struggle for access to health.

The current situation

People with severe mental disorders such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder die 10 to 20 years earlier than the general population. There has been little progress in addressing this health disparity and we need new ways to tackle this inequality such as that proposed in a recent 2017 review published in World Psychiatry by a group of international opinion leaders.

Factors that need to be considered

The 2017 review in World Psychiatry reminds us that excess mortality in people with mental health conditions is not due to a single factor but due to many things that interact. It suggests that these include:

At the level of the individual with a mental health problem lifestyle factors such as tobacco use, poor diet, lack of physical activity, substance misuse, sexual and other risk taking behaviors make a contribution to premature death.

When they looked at the systems level the authors suggested that poor leadership and an absence of policies, reduced access to health financing, poor co-ordination of services and poor access to care make a significant contribution to premature death.

The non-medical factors that they considered important in leading to premature death were discrimination in public policy that sometimes forgets to include mental health, limited coverage in health packages, higher levels of unemployment and poor housing, mental health stigma and discrimination in public attitudes.

Targets for change

Quite rightly, the authors of this review suggested that the approach to decrease the rate of premature mortality in those people with mental health problems has to be multi-level, so that each factor contributing to premature death can be tackled simultaneously in a holistic way in order to increase the chances of success.

We need to use the opportunity of the continuation of the Affordable Care Act to galvanize our efforts so that people with mental health conditions can have the same access to help that many people take for granted. We need attitudes towards mental health to change at individual and community level, we need activists who will fight for mental health at local and national government level and at International level.

There are many global initiatives specifically targeting an improvement in mental health outcomes using social, economic and medical interventions with the aim of improving on the current projections for global mortality and burden of disease by 2030. For instance, the Comprehensive Mental Health Action Plan 2013-2020 has set local, global and national targets for countries to meet including mental health promotion and prevention. Bringing together primary care, secondary care and community resources using a collaborative approach will go a long way towards improving the life expectancy of those with mental health conditions.

Source Huffington Post