Launch: child and caregiver mental health – using data to make progress

Child and caregiver mental health has long been neglected. While evidence shows the importance of investing in child and caregiver mental health, policies and practice continue to lag behind and data to guide decision making remains scarce.

To help tackle this long standing neglect, we are pleased to launch our latest brief, Child & Caregiver Mental Health: Using data to Make Progress. Produced in partnership with the Bernard van Leer Foundation, it examines child and caregiver mental health through the framework of Countdown 2030 – incorporating social determinants, factors affecting mental health service demand and need, and factors affecting the strength of mental health systems.

Countdown Global Mental Health 2030 was launched last month as an interactive dashboard developed to close the data gap by combining data from multiple sources, and capturing a broad range of indicators that shape the mental health of children and caregivers. In future years, Countdown Global Mental Health 2030 will go further to cover all population groups.

Using this framework, our new brief outlines how using the broader perspective of social and economic determinants can facilitate actions not only to promote mental health of children and caregivers, but also to adapt mental health services to specific population groups and individuals. It highlights the urgent need for global and national level investments, guided by accurate and timely data and evidence, and calls for increased and improved monitoring.

With examples of data that needs to be collected and policy actions that need to be taken, the brief also aligns with the theme of World Mental Health Day 2021 to highlight the inequality in those factors affecting child and caregiver mental health across the world.