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01/06/2007 - Submitted by: Argyro Kazaki

This report aims to describe and compare the state of mental health in the European Union and Norway, in the context of longstanding efforts of EU public health programmes to promote good mental health and to prevent mental ill health. A documented knowledge of the population’s mental health status, and its determinants, is essential to establish the basis for such programmes and to monitor and improve them.

In preparing this report, it has been assumed that collecting and comparing information on mental health between countries will enable Member States to improve their understanding of mental health issues and to plan appropriate policy responses. Mental health has to be considered as a public health priority due to the heavy burden it places on the EU and its Member States. 

The report’s starting point is the acknowledgement that Member States are different in terms of population density, aging, poverty levels, cultural background and habits. Furthermore, all of these factors have been shown to have some links with mental health status and some of them have been identified as risk factors. This project has involved representatives from all EU countries plus Norway, WHO Europe, a representative of a non-governmental organisation (Mental Health Europe) and a representative of OECD Europe.

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