Washington DC, 12 July 2022 (PAHO) - 48 professionals who manage public mental health services, from 15 countries in the region, enrolled in the Virtual Course on Management of Mental Health Services. The course, which started in May 2022 and is set to end in August of the same year, was designed to help participants acquire the skills and abilities to effectively manage comprehensive and integrated mental health services, centered on the individual, with a community-based vision, an emphasis on primary health care, cultural diversity, human rights, gender, and the fight against stigma. The course is available at the PAHO Virtual Campus for Public Health.
The 15 countries, Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Venezuela, will have managers trained in the development of mental health reform processes, modernization and decentralization of mental health systems, strengthening all levels of care, and reducing the gap between population's needs and available resources.
The course includes the analysis of the mental health reality in its contexts and prioritizing relevant information for decision making; implementation of a National or Regional Plan to Strengthen Community Mental Health Services; organization of mental health services with a community-based approach; design of the mental health information system; generate a funding base for the mental health plan; as well as the design of an evaluation and quality control system.
This course is developed within the framework of the Comprehensive Plan of Action on Mental Health (2013-2030) adopted by WHO. It promotes the importance of strengthening leadership and governance for mental health and highlights the importance of reducing the gap between resources assigned to mental health and the burden of disease.