Bachelor und Master: Freiwillige Zusatzveranstaltung

Mental Health Care in Developing Countries

Maleka Pervin (Assistent Professor University of Dhaka, Bangladesh)

Mental health is a significant factor for overall health and well-being. Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. However, in most developing countries mental health remains utterly neglected by the health system. There is increasing advocacy on the international level as well as within a variety of low and middle-income countries (LMIC) to promote mental health and to establish and support mental health services. The percentage of people with mental health problems living or being treated in institutions is much lower in LMIC than in high income countries (HIC). Reasons are a lack of public mental health facilities, scarcity of trained mental health professionals, insufficient financial resources, inadequately stewarded mental health policies, and stigma towards people suffering from mental disorders.

This module addresses the determinants of mental health and illness. These include individual, social, and environmental factors as well as their interaction with each other. In other words, mental health needs to be understood from biological, psychological as well as sociocultural perspectives. In order to prevent mental illness and promote mental health, there is a need to simultaneously target several multilayered factors. Especially the sociocultural factors are very different in LMIC than in HIC.

Learning outcomes, core skills:

  • are able to describe the sociocultural and social determinants of mental health in a LMIC. They can also describe how mental health is shaped not only by individual factors but also by the social, economical and physical environments in which people live throughout their lives.
  • have knowledge of relevant ecological, economic and social indicators.
  • can describe the state of mental health care in the country and present a set of priorities for addressing improvements to the fundamental gaps in mental healthcare highlighted in low resource settings
  • can follow a resource oriented approach to communication and mediation, and best practices for strengthening mental health literacy and collaborative arrangements with community caregivers, can assist this process.
Teaching format: Lecture, discussion, practical exercises, and role playes
Dates: Friday 12.11., 19.11., 26.11., 3.12., 10.12., 10am – 12pm, Room 1.134 GEMI

If you are interested in the course, please contact Maleka Pervin