The World Health Organization (WHO) has a dedicated department called the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse that focuses on addressing the global burden of mental health and substance use disorders. The department works with countries and partners to promote mental health, prevent and manage mental and substance use disorders, and provide support and care to people affected by these conditions.
The department’s work includes developing policies, guidelines, and standards for the prevention and treatment of mental and substance use disorders, as well as conducting research and building capacity among health care providers, policymakers, and other stakeholders. Some of the key areas of focus for the department include:
Prevention of substance use disorders: This includes promoting healthy lifestyles, reducing risk factors for substance use disorders, and providing education and information on the harms of substance abuse.
Treatment and rehabilitation of substance use disorders: This includes providing evidence-based treatment and support services, such as counseling, medication-assisted treatment, and peer support groups.
Advocacy and policy development: This includes working with governments and other partners to develop policies and strategies for the prevention and management of mental and substance use disorders, as well as promoting the rights and needs of people affected by these conditions.
Overall, the WHO Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse plays a critical role in addressing the global burden of mental and substance use disorders, highlighting the need for comprehensive, integrated approaches to prevention, treatment, and support services.