Focus on children's mental health, WHO urges African leaders

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"By the time you finish reading this, at least six people will have killed themselves around the world", reads a new op-ed co-written by Lady Gaga and Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus of the World Health Organization.

The op-ed also mentioned new research they hope will help in "scaling up" the global push to provide access to mental health care, turning it into a worldwide effort, "similar to the movement for HIV/AIDS".

"And, under these circumstances, discuss whether the equivalent of a mental health levy would be a proportionate response, both in terms of changing behaviour on the part of the companies involved and in terms of providing a funding stream for the expanded services we all want to see".

On October 10 every year, the world observes the day to draw attention to the importance of mental health. There are not enough specialised hospitals or specialised psychiatric hospital beds for children and adolescents.

Despite the millions of people who are affected by mental health issues, many of those suffering don't speak up because of the stigma that still exists.

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It urged African leaders to develop and strengthen evidence-based programmes for young people, with the support of national policymakers and programme managers.

Doyle-Price, Minister for Mental Health, Inequalities and, now Suicide Prevention, said: "I understand how tragic, devastating and long-lasting the effect of suicide can be on families and communities".

Half of all mental illness begin by the age of 14 years, but most cases go undetected and untreated, with serious long-term consequences for mental health, it said.

"With mental and behavioral health, the lack of services means the future cost implications are even higher because people aren't even getting treatment", Bass said. "But factors such as financial problems, stress, substance abuse and exam stress can also be factors".

"As a government, we have delineated our health system for easy appreciation of the roles required by all stakeholders in the sector". More definitely needs to be done to help teens in crisis.

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