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Strategies for Strengthening Human Resources for Mental Health 

Strategies for Strengthening Human Resources for Mental Health
Strategies for Strengthening Human Resources for Mental Health

Ritsuko Kakuma

, Harry Minas

, and Mario R. Dal Poz

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date: 04 August 2021

Many countries, particularly low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), face significant challenges in providing adequate human resources to deliver essential health interventions, including mental health care. This chapter presents strategies to strengthen human resources for mental health (HRMH). Firstly, accurate and up-to-date information on human resources for health and mental health is needed to ensure appropriate HRMH policy and planning. This requires a reliable (mental) health information system and ongoing research. Secondly, task-shifting is an essential strategy to address HRMH shortages. Specialist mental health professionals, psychosocial workers, non-specialist health workers, mental health care users, and caregivers all play critical roles in illness prevention, mental health promotion, early detection, treatment, and recovery of people with mental illnesses. And thirdly, a systemic approach to HRMH strengthening, such as the World Health Organization’s Human Resource for Health Action Framework, is necessary for any HRMH strategy to be sustainable.

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