Mental Health Literacy: A Strategy for Global Adolescent Mental Health Promotion

Author(s): Caroline S. Clauss-Ehlers*, Maria Guevara Carpio, Mark D. Weist

Journal Name: Adolescent Psychiatry

Volume 10 , Issue 2 , 2020

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Background: Adolescence is defined by key transitional elements which are considered within a cross-cultural context. The importance of building mental health capacity for adolescents in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) as well as high-income countries (HICs) is reviewed.

Objectives: To review the developmental period of adolescence, global needs for mental health promotion, the needs of LMICs while emphasizing building adolescent mental health capacity, and the importance of efforts to promote mental health literacy.

Methods: Mental health literacy (MHL) is presented as a strategy that can increase public awareness regarding mental health issues among adolescents. Increased awareness through an MHL framework is discussed as a way to build adolescent mental health capacity; with this work ideally occurring through global communities of practice (COP), dialogue, collaboration, and mutual support that aim to build innovation in systems of mental health promotion.

Results: The authors review structural components in research, practice, and policy that seek to build global adolescent mental health capacity, nested within COPs involving HICs and LMICs working together to advance mental health promotion for children, adolescents, and young people.

Conclusion: The article concludes with a discussion of how the three structural components (i.e., research, practice, and policy) can address gaps in the provision of global mental health services for adolescents to meet adolescent mental health needs in LMICs and HICs. A multi-sectoral approach emphasizing a global COP is presented as a way to scale up capacity and maximize outcomes.

Keywords: Adolescent mental health, adolescence, international mental health, building capacity.

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Article Details

Year: 2020
Published on: 02 November, 2020
Page: [73 - 83]
Pages: 11
DOI: 10.2174/2210676610666200204104429
Price: $65

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