‘Mental health is an universal human right’

World Mental Health Day 2023 serves as a platform for individuals and communities to observe together this important health day. This years theme is ‘Mental health is an universal human right.’ The collective effort aims to enhance understanding, elevate consciousness, and spur initiatives that advance and safeguard the mental well-being of all, recognizing it as a fundamental human entitlement.

Currently, Bosnia and Herzegovina holds the SEE Health Network (SEEHN) presidency, and it focuses its primary efforts and expertise to promote mental health reforms, namely community mental health services, including the ones in post-conflict settings. Special attention is given to the healthcare workforce and its mental health, mainly after the pandemic in view of the pandemic impact and the permacrisis in the region..

The SEEHN is dedicated to its continued collaboration with other organizations in an effort to maintain mental health high on the policy makers agenda.

On September 26, 2023, the SEEHN Secretariat was proud to organize a highly successful Mental Health Session during the prestigious European Health Forum Gastein (EHFG) 2023 conference.

The session convened an esteemed assembly of experts, policymakers, and advocates, uniting to tackle critical mental health challenges prevalent in the South-eastern Europe (SEE) region.

The event was marked by profound discussions, exchange of invaluable insights, and the exploration of strategies aimed at fortifying mental health services across Europe.

Moreover, by the end of this year, a study tour, at the WHO Collaborative Center for Research and Training in Mental Health, to visit the community mental health services in Trieste is planned.

The SEEHN strongly urges its Member States to act, to safeguard the mental health of the medical personnel, and to increase the funding for the battle against the hidden mental illness burden. We all must continue to seek to deepen our European and South Eastern European commitment to mental health as a rights-based strategy.

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