Debate: Giving prevention a chance to prove its worth in lowering common mental disorder prevalence: how long will it take?

Johan Ormel*, Michael VonKorff

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialAcademicpeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)
    12 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    Large increases in treatment of Common Mental Disorders (CMD) have failed to reduce population prevalence and global burden. Preventive strategies are needed to lower CMD prevalence and burden. Giving prevention a real chance to prove its promise will require: (a) full embedment in social institutions; (b) long-term structural funding; (c) targeting major CMD determinants early in life combining population-level and individual-level strategies; and, (d) integrated evaluation of short-term and long-term effects to guide implementation. Targeting life skills and resilience of children and parenting skills of their parents has the potential for long-term benefits for multiple outcomes including well-being, social, economic, and financial domains as well as mental health outcomes. However, the large investments may not occur without compelling proof of effectiveness, but evaluation of effectiveness cannot occur without long-term, structural investments. Overcoming this impasse requires a paradigm shift. Randomized controlled trials of initial efficacy need to be supplemented by evaluation strategies for long-term surveillance of community-based programs that guide implementation while assessing long-term effectiveness.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)86-88
    Number of pages3
    JournalChild and adolescent mental health
    Volume26
    Issue number1
    Early online date4-Jan-2021
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Feb-2021

    Keywords

    • DEPRESSION
    • ANXIETY

    Cite this