Past Projects

Mental Health & Poverty Project

DFID Contract no: RPC HD6

Period: 1 August 2005 – 31 July 2010

Lead institution: Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health, University of Cape Town

The programme conducted an analysis of existing mental health policies in poor countries; provided interventions to assist in the development and implementation of mental health policies in those countries; and evaluated the policy implementation over a 5-year period.

MHaPP was conducted in four African countries that represent a variety of scenarios in mental health policy development and implementation:

  • Ghana
  • South Africa
  • Uganda
  • Zambia

In addition to research and Ministry of Health partners in each country, the consortium collaborated with the following international partners who lead themes across all four countries:

  • World Health Organization
  • University of Leeds
  • University of KwaZulu-Natal
  • Human Sciences Research Council

Strategies for making mental health care accessible to poor communities were documented, for instance, through primary health care and non-health sectors, with an emphasis on promoting mental health and providing care for those who needed it most, and could least afford it. Capacity was developed in mental health research, policy making, service planning and service delivery. By the end of the 5-year project, MHaPP was able to provide a coherent body of high quality policy relevant new knowledge to assist other developing countries to break the cycle of poverty and mental ill-health.

Policy Brief 1: Breaking the vicious cycle of mental ill-health and poverty

Policy Brief 2: The prioritisation of mental health as a public health issue in South Africa

Policy Brief 3: Challenges of implementing mental health policy and legislation in South Africa

Policy Brief 4: Promoting community-based services for mental health in South Africa

Policy Brief 5: Inter-sectoral collaboration for mental health in South Africa

Policy Brief 6: Integrating mental health into maternal care in South Africa

Policy Brief 7: Developing effective mental health laws in Africa

Policy Brief 8: Developing effective mental health policies and plans in Africa

Policy Brief 9: Key elements of situation analyses to inform mental health policy

Policy Brief 10: Developing and adopting mental health policies and plans in Africa

Policy Brief 11: Developing and adopting mental health laws in Africa

Policy Brief 12: Better information for mental health

Policy Brief 13: Scaling up mental health services at district level

Policy Brief 14: Mental health and development

Policy Brief 15: Maternal mental health – addressing key vulnerabilities

Policy Brief 16: Mental health information system in Ghana

Policy Brief 17: Integration of mental health into primary health care in Uganda – success and challenges

Policy Brief 18: Mental health law reform in Uganda

Policy Brief 19: Developing and adopting a mental health law – lessons from Zambia

Policy Brief 20: Integrating mental health care into district health care – lessons from Zambia

Situation analysis reports of mental health policy development and implementation produced for each country can be found below:

Ghana

South Africa

Uganda

Zambia