The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, subsequent lockdowns and restricted access to non-COVID related healthcare has put a devastating strain on many peoples’ mental health. Though mental health remains primarily a national competence in the EU at this time, the Renew Europe Group in the European Parliament recently launched a policy paper outlining several proposals for change and a call for a common European strategic approach on this topic. Such an integrated approach across sectors and Member States, through a “Mental Health in all policies approach” (MHiAP) would help shift to a model based on prevention, rather than costly mental health treatment services.
During this week’s Mental Health Awareness Week, the Renew Europe Group is reiterating that universal, non-discriminatory and equitable access to mental health services for citizens needs to be a priority for all EU Member States.
María Soraya Rodriguez Ramos MEP (Ciudadanos, ES), Member of the European Parliament Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety and author of the new mental health policy paper on behalf of Renew Europe, said:
“Despite the huge impact on peoples’ lives and well-being, mental health disorders remain one of the most neglected areas of public health and a relatively low priority across the EU. In order to ensure the full prosperity of our citizens, it is imperative that Europe puts mental health at the core of its political priorities, using all tools at our disposal to present a European Mental Health Strategy, improving the resilience, coordination and resources of our mental health systems all levels. The time where Europe failed to fully address mental health must now be over."
"It is imperative that 🇪🇺 puts #mentalhealth at the core of its political priorities, using all tools at our disposal to present a European Mental Health Strategy", says @sorayarr_— Renew Europe (@RenewEurope) May 10, 2021
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