Joint Statement: Mental Health Advocacy Platform – Healthier Together Initiative – a commendable step in the right direction, but a more ambitious approach to mental health is needed
Together, with the Mental Health Advocacy Platform, we wrote a joint statement welcoming the European Commission’s Healthier Together – EU Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) initiative. This ambitious initative aims to support EU Member States in reducing the burden of major non-communicable diseases (NCDs), improving mental health and well-being, setting out aspiring priorities and examples of inspiring practices, alongside an overview of available financial tools to translate them into concrete actions.
Though we stand ready to further collaborate with the EC in the implementation phase of the Initiative and applaud the co-creation process used to develop the EU NCD initiative to support our members in taking stock of existing opportunities that they can benefit from, we now call for further action. We now call to address the links between NCDs and Mental Health through an EU-wide Mental Health Strategy. An intersectional EU-wide Mental Health Strategy is needed that acknowledges inequalities in outcomes, ultimately acknowledging proper mental health care as a basic human right.
Furthermore, we call for concrete plans to be put in place that enable Member States to implement such measures effectively. Additionally, Member States should allocate a proportion of general health funding to mental health initiatives and implement the Healthier Together actions through a co-creation process that involves individuals with lived experience.