A sustainable approach to depression: Moving from words to actions

Beezhold, Julian; Destrebecq, Frédéric; Fresu, Maria; grosse Holtforth, Martin; Hermans, Marc; Jones, Kevin; Kärkkäinen, Hilkka; Kramer, Stephanie; Schubert, Alexander; Walker, Margaret; Zohar, Joseph; Wait, Suzanne; Evans, Alexandra (2018). A sustainable approach to depression: Moving from words to actions Brussels, Belgium: GAMIAN-Europe, the European Parliament

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Depression is an urgent and growing concern for our societies: the number of people living with depression rose by 18% between 2005 and 2015. In 2030, depression will be the leading cause of disease burden in high-income countries. Depression affects every aspect of a person’s life. It has a multiplying effect on other conditions and a significant impact on quality of life. It is a leading cause of low productivity, with a considerable cost to society: €92 billion per year, or 30% more than stroke. And tragically, nearly one in five people with depression ends their life by suicide. Despite these figures, our policy response to depression has, so far, been insufficient. As a society, we lack both understanding of the condition and empathy for those affected. There are huge gaps in diagnosis and care. Mental health services are chronically underfunded. Several promising programmes have been launched to address depression, but sustainable implementation and funding are a frequent problem. With depression on the rise, it is time to take our social response to depression to the next level. Greater prevention would reduce the incidence of depression by 21%. Providing all people with depression with evidence-based treatment would reduce the disease burden by a third. But solutions should not be limited to the clinical setting: we need an integrated, comprehensive response to depression, which tackles its clinical and social causes; engages young people and other vulnerable groups; and addresses the impact of depression across the home, school and workplace. This report aims to identify key factors that will ensure programmes for depression are sustainable and have a lasting impact on people affected. Drawing from the practical experience of 19 case studies and the published literature, we have identified ten lessons learnt that may help policymakers build a sustainable response to depression in years to come.

Item Type:

Report (Report)


07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy

UniBE Contributor:

grosse Holtforth, Martin


100 Philosophy > 150 Psychology
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health


GAMIAN-Europe, the European Parliament




Melanie Best

Date Deposited:

27 May 2019 17:54

Last Modified:

30 Mar 2020 14:34





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