Emerging from the Darkness: Changing the Mental Health Paradigm
Sometimes the mind seems to have been left behind. Despite tremendous progress in other branches of medicine, mental health services fail millions who need them, the pharmaceutical armamentarium is inadequate, stigma remains a tremendous impediment to care, and the power of early intervention has not been adequately harnessed. Although researchers and practitioners recognize the influence of social context on mental health, it is too often ignored, especially in resource-poor settings. Teen suicide, depression, including slow-to-be recognized post-partum depression, and age-related dementia are all reminders of unmet needs. How do we get people to view mental health as a basic human right? How do we reduce treatment disparities, develop effective new drugs, and strengthen community health services? Do we need radically new approaches?