On the occasion WMHD, the World Health Organization (WHO) highlighted its Comprehensive Mental Health Action Plan (CMHAP) for the period 2013-2020 for improving the mental health of people around the world.
We can all benefit from the warmth and wisdom of older generations. But while many people look forward to a fulfilling old age, more than one in five adults aged 60 and over experiences mental or neurological disorders such as dementia and depression, UN Chief Ban Ki-moon said in his message.
Health care professionals and older people themselves often do not recognize these mental health problems. Worse, people are frequently reluctant to seek help because of the stigma surrounding mental illness, he added.
Since this years WMHD focuses on older adults, there is a need to raise awareness of mental health problems of elderly people and make sincere efforts to overcome them.
Highlighting the fact that older adults are more vulnerable to physical neglect and shameful mistreatment that can itself trigger mental health problems, Ban called for greater efforts to carry out the Action Plan for the sake of all people with mental health problems, especially those who are older and require special attention.