Photo: Dag Rekve/WHO - Photo:Photo: Dag Rekve/WHO
Photo: Dag Rekve/WHO Photo: Dag Rekve/WHO

Mental health on the agenda

WHO’s annual forum on mental health, the mhGAP Forum, took place in Geneva 9 – 10 October. Ambassador Brattskar contributed to the discussion with a statement about Norway’s efforts to strengthen the mental health response both at home and abroad.

The mhGAP Forum brings together a diverse group of stakeholders to address mental, neurological and substance use disorders, especially for countries with low- and middle-income. Around 14 per cent of the global burden of disease stems from these disorders, but most of the people affected never access the treatment they need.


The focus of this year’s forum is mental health capacity building within countries as part of the implementation of the WHO’s Mental Health Action Plan 2013-2020. Member countries and representatives from other UN agencies, civil society, academia and the private sector met to discuss the challenges in strengthening the mental health response.


Ambassador Battskar contributed to the discussion by highlighting Norway’s move towards a more outpatient, locally based and open psychiatry. Abroad, Norway seeks to implement mental health in all relevant donor programmes and humanitarian responses. A concrete example of this is Norway’s support of the development of a training manual on mental health and gender-based violence to help survivors of sexual violence in conflict.


Read Ambassador Brattskar’s full statement here: