A new report by the World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH) was released for World Mental Health Day, October 10, 2010. The theme of this year’s report was an extension of last year’s theme of “integration of care,” focusing on the relationship between mental health disorders and chronic illnesses.
The report examines how physical and mental health disorders are closely connected and refers to research that shows that people with severe or chronic physical illnesses often have a co-existing mental health problem. Five chronic physical illnesses (cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, respiratory diseases and obesity) are highlighted. Fact sheets on the relationship between mental illness and chronic conditions are included, as well as action steps for some of the chronic illnesses. The report also presents a call to action for the use of integrated care in dealing with chronic physical illnesses and mental health issues, and gives strategies for consumers and family caregivers dealing with physical and mental health disorders.
See “Mental Health and Chronic Physical Illnesses: The Need for Continued and Integrated Care,” October 2010, available at www.wfmh.org.