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Ukraine and the Netherlands initiate resolution on mental health in times of war and disaster

26 January 2024

Ukraine and the Kingdom of the Netherlands, together with a group of 12 WHO member states, initiated a draft resolution on “Strengthening mental health and psychosocial support before, during and after armed conflicts, natural and human-made disasters, public health and other emergencies”.

The resolution aims to strengthen prevention, promotion, protection, and assistance related to mental health and psychosocial support in emergencies.

“Against the backdrop of an unprecedented number of humanitarian crises around the world - whether caused by armed conflicts, natural and human-made disasters, medical and other emergencies - mental health promotion and psychosocial support are extremely important for promoting the right to a high standard of health,” said First Deputy Minister of Health Serhii Dubrov in his speech at the 154th WHO session in Geneva.

Unmet mental and psychosocial needs also have far-reaching and long-term negative human, social, and economic consequences that affect individuals, communities, and society as a whole.

To improve global mental health, the WHO Secretariat has developed a Comprehensive Mental Health Action Plan 2013-2030, which sets out clear actions for Member States, the WHO Secretariat, and international, regional, and national partners to promote mental health and well-being.

It is expected that the resolution will be jointly finalized and adopted by consensus at the 77th World Health Assembly in May this year.