Item 3 – Interactive Dialogue. Special Rapporteur on the right of physical and mental health

Human Rights Council 44th Session. Item 3 – Interactive Dialogue

The Special Rapporteur on the right of physical and mental health

Statement delivered by First Secretary, Mr Sean Lobo


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Norway would like to thank the secretariat for the report.

Mental health has been a neglected field globally in both low and high income countries. Mental health does not enjoy parity with physical health in terms of budgeting and attention.

Covid-19 highlights the need to consider physical health and mental health together. The Covid-19 response also have mental health consequences, due to isolation and fear. Integrating mental health services into primary health care is more important than ever.

Stigma, ignorance and superstition create ripe conditions for exploitation and abuse of those suffering from severe mental health conditions. We have seen reports of significant human rights violations reflected in inhumane treatment and living conditions.

We were encouraged by reading about promotion of non-coercive ways of treatment in the report. We must increase our efforts to ensure that the dignity and rights of people with mental health illnesses are safeguarded and that a rights based perspective complements the biomedical paradigm.

Last year, the Norwegian government launched a strategy on combating non-communicable diseases in Norwegian development policy. Mental health is a priority, and we are looking forward to working with partners to advance the cause of mental health both globally and locally, especially in the most vulnerable communities.

Thank you!