Background: ASEAN integration aims to transform the GMS into a single market with
free flows of products, services, and skilled labor, as well as investment openness, which will
ultimately force regional economic growth. Therefore, this integration is likely to bring about a
big change to this area in the new era; it can subsequently cause many problems as well, including
mental health issues of the people in this region. The characteristic differences among the GMS
member countries in terms of trade and investment, social and cultural values, medical information
and technology, and the living and working environment have become major problems affecting
mental health disorders, which are usually identified as depression, stress, and substance abuse.
Methods: This review paper is a literature review of the relationship of the determinants affecting
GMS mental disorders conducted using the following strategies: 1) collecting data from previous
qualitative and quantitative research studies, comparatively analyzing the literature, articles,
published papers, and reports relevant to the existing policies on economic, environmental, and
healthcare issues obtained from the GMS; and 2) exchanging information from the institutions
involved, including reports and papers regarding the determinants affecting mental health disorders
of the people in the GMS, which were used to generate the synthesis of the existing knowledge of
the mental health and to provide recommendation programs for the GMS people.
Results: Based on the reviewed literature there are four key factors affecting mental health,
especially mental health in GMS populations: 1) the living and work environments; 2) trade and
investment; 3) technology and medical information; and 4) social and cultural values. The study
found that the increasing number of mental health disorders is a big burden for national healthcare
spending. Financial issues have become a major key to the wide prevalence of mental disorders in
the GMS. Health issues related to mental health disorders are also caused by the environment and
other related factors and therefore a stable and a well-balanced environment is an indicator of
healthy mental status. In addition, the environment is a way to pursue both physical and mental health
because green spaces serve as a mood freshener and can alleviate anxiety, stress, and depression.
Conclusion: Globalization and urbanization should follow sustainable development instructions and
concerns about the population's health, especially regarding mental health. These key determinants
affect the people's life, especially in terms of mental health thus leading to mental health disorders.