Washington, DC, June 9, 2023 (PAHO) - The High-Level Commission on Mental Health and COVID-19 of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), led by Her Excellency Mrs. Epsy Campbell Barr, former Vice President of Costa Rica, and Ambassador Nestor Mendez, Assistant Secretary General of the Organization of American States, developed a report with 10 recommendations called a "New Agenda for Mental Health in the Region of the Americas" (NAMHA).

The launch of "A new agenda for mental health in the Region of the Americas" consisted of a hybrid event in Washington DC, attended by Dr. Jarbas Barbosa, Director of PAHO, Dr. Dévora Kestel, Director of Mental Health and Addictions from the WHO, among other authorities, as well as mental health experts. In addition to the presentation of the 10 recommendations, two panels were held: the first addressed the key priorities for mental health, while the second presented examples of how these recommendations can be put into practice at the national level.

The Commissioners worked throughout 2022 analyzing the effects of the pandemic and compiling innovative solutions based on good practices in the context of the mental health situation before the pandemic. They identified some priority mental health areas for the Region and consulted key stakeholders and experts to develop these 10 recommendations handed to PAHO. The report released is made up of a set of mental health policies and strategies formulated in such a way that they can be incorporated into the countries' post-pandemic recovery strategies.

NAMHA presents ten recommendations with corresponding action points, accompanied by examples of effective cases in the Region of the Americas to guide their implementation. It presents a framework based on evidence and experience that can be adapted to the local situation. All countries, regardless of their resource constraints, can put this agenda into practice in order to improve the mental health of their population.

Read the report here: "A New Agenda for Mental Health in the Americas"