China tackles surge in mental illness

Nature (Impact Factor: 41.46). 11/2010; 468(7321):145. DOI: 10.1038/468145a
Source: PubMed


Psychological examinations to be added to selection procedure for
government officials.

Full-text preview

Available from:
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In the wake of dramatic economic success during the past 2 decades, the specialized field of neurology has undergone a significant transformation in China. With an increase in life expectancy, the problems of aging and cognition have grown. Lifestyle alterations have been associated with an epidemiologic transition both in the incidence and etiology of stroke. These changes, together with an array of social issues and institution of health care reform, are creating challenges for practicing neurologists throughout China. Notable problems include overcrowded, decrepit facilities, overloaded physician schedules, deteriorating physician-patient relationships, and an insufficient infrastructure to accommodate patients who need specialized neurologic care. Conversely, with the creation of large and sophisticated neurology centers in many cities across the country, tremendous opportunities exist. Developments in neurologic subspecialties enable delivery of high-quality care. Clinical and translational research based on large patient populations as well as highly sophisticated technologies are emerging in many neurologic centers and pharmaceutical companies. Child neurology and neurorehabilitation will be fast-developing subdisciplines. Given China's extensive population, the growth and progress of its neurology complex, and its ever-improving quality control, it is reasonable to anticipate that Chinese neurologists will contribute notably to unraveling the pathogenic factors causing neurologic diseases and to providing new therapeutic solutions.
    Neurology 11/2011; 77(22):1986-92. DOI:10.1212/WNL.0b013e31823a0ed3 · 8.29 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The draft National Mental Health Law of China was released for public consultations on June 10, 2011 [1] . Following wide-ranging public consultations, the draft was further amended by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress on October 24, 2011 [2,3] . Although the penultimate draft has been finalized, there are continuous debates and concerns about its potential negative effects on mental health services in China. The article in this issue of the Shanghai Archives of Psychiatry by Professor Xie [4] argues that the proposed law over-emphasizes patient's self-sufficiency and, thus, neglects traditional Chinese culture, accepted practices of mental health care in the country, and the insufficient community resources for providing mental health services; he contends that these weaknesses in the law will lead to a number of undesirable consequences [4] . Professor Xie's concerns reflect the negative attitudes about the law of a considerable number of mental health professionals in China who assume that the strong emphasis on the protection of the rights of psychiatric patients will restrict clinician's treatment options. Our views about the draft National Mental Health Law, which we briefly summarize below, are different. According to the United Nations Charter and relevant international treaties, the recognition of the human rights of psychiatric patients should be the fundamental basis for any mental health legislation [5] . China's proposed national law conforms to this basic international principle. It aims to promote mental health, improve the quality of mental health services, and protect the human rights of psychiatric patients during the process of hospital admission, treatment, and discharge [2] . There are an estimated 173 million Chinese citizens suffering from diagnosable psychiatric disorders [6] .
    Shanghai Archives of Psychiatry 02/2012; 24(1):48-9. DOI:10.3969/j.issn.1002-0829.2012.01.010
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objective: Rapid economic growth and social change in China in recent years have been accompanied by increased rates of mental health problems among the country's adolescents. This study examined rates of mental health service use and associated factors among Chinese adolescents. Methods: A survey of 1,891 high school students in grades ten through 12 from three high schools in Shantou, China, was conducted in 2009. Measures of mental health status, service need (perceived and objective), mental health service use, and informal help seeking were obtained. Results: Twenty-five percent of the adolescents reported a perceived need for the services of a mental health professional. Only 5% of the sample had used school-based mental health services and only 4% had used non-school-based services. Three factors emerged as independently associated with adolescent use of both school-based and non-school-based services: perceiving a need for mental health services, having turned to a teacher for help, and having turned to a relative other than one's parents for help. Male gender, being a 12th grader, and being an only child were independently associated with use of school-based services only, whereas a suicide attempt and having turned to one's parents for help were independently associated with use of non-school-based services. Conclusions: Findings indicate a high level of unmet need for mental health services among Chinese adolescents and highlight the need to improve the mental health knowledge of parents, teachers, and other significant individuals in adolescents' lives to facilitate adolescents' access to the mental health services that they need.
    Psychiatric services (Washington, D.C.) 08/2012; 63(10). DOI:10.1176/ · 2.41 Impact Factor
Show more