The Millennium Development Goals have guided development co-operation in the 15 years up to 2015, achieving some significant progress in the priorities on which they focused. As the framework for the post-2015 development agenda is negotiated, this article reviews the evidence for the place of mental health in broader development issues that have already been outlined in the run-up to 2015.
If mental health is going to be recognised as having an essential role in development, there needs to be a consensus on priorities for advocacy. Various key issues emerged from a survey of stakeholders in the Movement for Global Mental Health (MGMH), leading to a Position Statement, which is now available for use by advocates. The priorities that emerged were increasing access to mental health services, and addressing human rights abuse, stigma, and exclusion.
Mental health is a cross-cutting issue, and including it in frameworks for action will increase the likelihood of achieving global priorities for development such as poverty reduction, economic development, improved health, and ensuring the most vulnerable in society are not left behind.