World Health Day 2017: Depression Let’s Talk

World Health Day 2017 - Posters

World Health Day is observed on 7 April every year to mark the anniversary of the founding of WHO. It provides us with an opportunity to mobilize actions around a specific health topic of concern to people all over the world. The theme of World Health Day campaign this year is depression. The overall goal of the campaign is that more people with depression seek and receive help.

Depression is a significant contributor to the global burden of disease and affects people in all communities across the world. More than 300 million people were living with depression in 2015; this represents over 4% of the global population. Depression is ranked by WHO as the single largest contributor to global disability, accounting for 7.5% of all years lived with disability in 2015. Apart from health impacts, mental disorders have serious economic consequences-depression was estimated to cost at least US$ 800 billion in 2010 in lost economic output, a sum expected to more than double by 2030. Mental health issues such as depression and physical health issues are closely interlinked.

In Thailand, depression causes a significant number of years of life lost due to disability. The study of burden of diseases among Thai population in 2013 showed that depression was the third leading cause of disability-adjusted life year (DALY) lost in Thai females, after cardiovascular diseases and diabetes, respectively. Among males, it is among the top twelve causes of disease burden. Stigma surrounding mental illnesses, including depression, remains a major barrier for seeking help from family, friends and professionals. Depression is a treatable condition. No one with depression should be left unreached with the help and care they need. Talking with people who are trusted is the first step towards recovery from depression.

The following campaign materials prepared by WHO in collaboration with the Department of Mental Health, Ministry of Public Health of Thailand provide more information about depression.

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