Interventions that improve mental health
Mental disorders, which are already among the leading contributors to global disease, are expected to account for an increasing proportion of all diseases in the decades to come. These disorders increase risk for other causes of illness and death, including chronic conditions like cardiovascular disease. Mental disorders are also associated with enormous social and economic costs. Clearly, there can be no health without mental health.
Dr. Arijit Nandi, Canada Research Chair in Political Economy of Global Health, is researching the widespread effects of social and economic policies and economic factors on mental health outcomes.
While treatment interventions are one way to improve mental health, such interventions on a large-scale may be ineffective. On average, less than one-quarter of people with mental health disorders in lower-income countries receive treatment. Nandi believes limited treatment capacity in low- and middle-income countries suggests a preventative approach that focuses on the social determinants of mental disorders should complement clinical approaches.
Evidence from high-income countries implies that economic factors such as unemployment may drive risk for mental health disorders. However, few studies have examined the association between economic policies, macroeconomic factors and global mental health. Nandi is aiming to fill this research gap.
Nandi’s research will help guide interventions for improving population health and reducing global socioeconomic inequalities in health.