Opinion Paper

Mental healthcare in Kenya: Exploring optimal conditions for capacity building

Elijah Marangu, Natisha Sands, John Rolley, David Ndetei, Fethi Mansouri
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 6, No 1 | a682 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v6i1.682 | © 2014 Elijah Marangu, Natisha Sands, John Rolley, David Ndetei, Fethi Mansouri | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 19 March 2014 | Published: 10 October 2014

About the author(s)

Elijah Marangu, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Deakin University, Australia
Natisha Sands, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Deakin University, Australia
John Rolley, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Deakin University, Australia
David Ndetei, Africa Mental Health Foundation and University of Nairobi, Kenya
Fethi Mansouri, Centre for Citizenship and Globalization, Deakin University, Australia


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Abstract

The global burden of disease related to mental disorders is on the increase, with the World Health Organization (WHO) estimating that over 450 million people are affected worldwide. The Mental Health Global Action Program (mhGAP) was launched by the WHO in 2002 in order to address the widening gap in access to mental healthcare in low-income countries. Despite these efforts, access to mental healthcare in low-income countries remains poor and is often described as inadequate, inefficient and inequitable, with an 85% estimated treatment gap in low-income countries, as compared with 35% to 50% in high-income countries.In this article, the authors argue that integrating mental health services into primary healthcare settings through capacity building is vital with regard to achieving mhGAP goals. The article explores the challenges to and potential enablers for the improvement of the delivery of broad-based mental healthcare services in Kenya. The authors propose the integration of the conceptual dimensions of both the cosmopolitanism and capabilities approaches as a combined strategy for dealing with capacity building in heterogeneous settings such as Kenya.


Keywords

Mental health; Kenya; Primary health care; Capacity building; Cosmopolitanism; Capabilities approach

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Crossref Citations

1. Mobile Based mhGAP-IG Depression Screening in Kenya
Christine W. Musyimi, Victoria N. Mutiso, Zahra R. Haji, Erick S. Nandoya, David M. Ndetei
Community Mental Health Journal  vol: 54  issue: 1  first page: 84  year: 2018  
doi: 10.1007/s10597-016-0072-9