The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), which includes the US, Canada, Australia, China and 17 other countries included a Roadmap to Promote Mental Wellness in a Healthy Asia Pacific (2014-2020) in the official declaration of their 26th annual meeting.
Swift economic changes, ageing populations and natural disasters raise challenges for APEC member economies that require a proactive and concerted response. There are significant opportunities for APEC member economies to strengthen mental health through heightened investment and the facilitation of multi-lateral, multi-sectoral collaborations and public-private partnerships. APEC member economies acknowledge the significant economic benefits of a mentally healthy population and that prevention and recovery from mental disorders is possible through affordable and effective treatments and care. Inaction by APEC member economies to prioritize and strengthen mental health will result in costs that impede the achievement of economic development goals while threatening the wellbeing of communities and workplaces.
The roadmap contains three phases of activites:
Phase 1- Best practices exchange and strategic assessment (2014-2015)
- Formalize APEC Task Force on Mental Health
- APEC Hub for best and innovative practices in mental health partnerships
- Strategic needs assessment & APEC Task Force Roundtable
- Collaboration with the APEC Business Advisory Council
Phase 2- Launch and assessment of pilot initiatives (2016-2018)
- APEC Train-the-Trainer Workshop to support collaborations and promotion of mental health
- Surveillance and monitoring of pilot collaborations
Phase 3- Comprehensive review and elaboration of effective collaborations (2019-2020)
- Comprehensive review of pilot collaborations
- APEC task force on mental health official report to ministers and leaders
The APEC Ministerial Declaration, released this past weekend, endorses the mental health roadmap as a key component of the "Healthy Asia Pacific 2020" initiative. This support by APEC Ministers follows review/endorsement of the roadmap by the APEC Senior Officials last week. Attached is the final version of the roadmap as submitted and endorsed by APEC Ministers. Below are the relevant Declaration excerpts and links.