ZIMBABWE is set to launch the Mental Health Investment case report in October which will be used mainly as an advocacy tool providing quantified evidence of the long-term health, social and economic benefits of investment in mental health.
By Patricia Mashiri
Speaking during a mental health case investment case inception virtual meeting, Mr Gwati Gwati, the Ministry of Health and Child Care (MoHCC) Health Economist said the Mental health case investment case provides quantification of the costs of mental health conditions to the health sector and to the national economy at large, and of the benefits of scaled up actions.
Ultimate objective is to prevent the growth of challenges of mental health by investing today to avert future costs of managing the conditions thereof. The purpose of the mental health investment case is used mainly as an advocacy tool, providing quantified evidence of the long-term health social, economic benefits, of investment in mental health.
“It is a resource mobilization case, a coordination framework and a program effectiveness strategic plan and we will achieve it by providing economic analysis on the benefits of scaled up action and country specific recommendations on the most feasible, cost effective steps,” Mr Gwati said.
He added that the Mental health investment case helps in achieving universal health coverage, advancing mental policies and advocating for human rights.
Meanwhile, Dr Patience Mavunganidze, Deputy Director Mental Health in the Ministry of Health and Child Care said national and international teams will work to develop the investment case report.
“Data will be required include demographic, economic and epidemiological data, including Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per worker, workforce participation and unemployment rates, absenteeism and reduced capacity and work for people with mental health conditions,” she said.
Dr Yi Lee the World Health Organization Headquarters Lead economist said there are three main elements in mental health these are situational analysis, economic analysis and institutional analysis.
“Economic burden of mental health conditions come in two components which are direct and indirect costs. On direct costs, we have health care expenditure whilst on indirect costs there is premature death, absenteeism (sick days) and presenteeism with reduced productivity due to disease while being on the workplace.