Vikram Patel: Mental Health for All by Involving All

If you should speak to anyone affected by a mental illness, the chances are that you will hear stories of hidden suffering, shame, and discrimination in nearly every sector of their lives.”
Vikram Patel

Patel, shocked by poor mental health care across the world and faced with the challenge of providing this care for the developing world, has been deeply involved in training ordinary citizens to deal with these health problems. This experiment has had astounding results, as he describes.

As a keen supporter of improvements to mental health care – I feel that this area of ill health is sorely neglected – I found this very enlightening. I hadn’t really thought into this side of health care in relation to the developing world, always more concerned on what was being done regarding physical health, and so this really opened my eyes. Clearly, its a pretty amazing idea, not only because it expands mental health care, but because it allows others to learn a new skill, to become trained in an area they would not have had a chance to be otherwise. In the developing world, where education and other opportunities to lead a better life are so limited, this scheme is obviously greatly needed by all, rather than just those suffering from mental illness. Basically, everyone benefits.

Definitely something to watch.

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