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India, China home to one-third of mentally ill people: Lancet study

That burden will become much heavier in coming decades, especially in India, where it is projected to increase by a quarter by 2025.

May 19, 2016 17:21 IST
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India and China are home to more than a third of the global burden of mental illnesses. It was revealed by the Lancet journal on 18 May 2016 to mark the launch of China-India Mental Health Alliance Series.

Key findings of the study

• Nearly one-third of the global burden of mental illness and substance abuse disorders is borne by India and China combined.

• This is higher than such cases in all developed countries put together.

• While India accounted for 15 percent of the global mental, neurological and substance use disorder burden, China accounted for 17 percent.

• Developing countries as a whole accounted for three-fourths of the global burden of mental illnesses.

• That burden will become much heavier in coming decades, especially in India, where it is projected to increase by a quarter by 2025.

• In India, only 10 percent with mental disorders are estimated to receive evidence-based interventions. In China, the treatment-seeking rate is less than 6 percent.

• Less than one percent of national healthcare budgets in China and India are allocated to mental health care.

• In the USA the figure is nearly 6 percent, while in Germany and France it is pegged around 10 percent.

About China-India Mental Health Alliance Series

• The China-India Mental Health Alliance comprises experts from both countries and elsewhere.

• The experts have worked to produce a collection of systematic reviews based on extensive literature searches of both international and national databases.

• The series is aimed at encouraging further collaboration between Chinese and Indian mental health research communities to address shared concerns.

• Vikram Patel (India) and Michael R Phillips are the Series leaders.

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