Bibhav Acharya , 1 , 2 , 3 , Duncan Maru 1 , 4 , 5 , 6 , Ryan Schwarz 1 , 4 , 6 , 7 , David Citrin 1 , 8 , 9 , 10 , Jasmine Tenpa 1 , Soniya Hirachan 3 , 11 , Madhur Basnet 3 , 12 , Poshan Thapa 1 , Sikhar Swar 1 , 13 , Scott Halliday 1 , 10 , Brandon Kohrt 14 , 15 , 16 , 17 , Nagendra P. Luitel 14 , Erick Hung 2 , Bikash Gauchan 1 , Rajeev Pokharel 18 , Maria Ekstrand 19
13 January 2017
Mental illnesses are the largest contributors to the global burden of non-communicable diseases. However, there is extremely limited access to high quality, culturally-sensitive, and contextually-appropriate mental healthcare services. This situation persists despite the availability of interventions with proven efficacy to improve patient outcomes. A partnerships network is necessary for successful program adaptation and implementation.
We describe our partnerships network as a case example that addresses challenges in delivering mental healthcare and which can serve as a model for similar settings. Our perspectives are informed from integrating mental healthcare services within a rural public hospital in Nepal. Our approach includes training and supervising generalist health workers by off-site psychiatrists. This is made possible by complementing the strengths and weaknesses of the various groups involved: the public sector, a non-profit organization that provides general healthcare services and one that specializes in mental health, a community advisory board, academic centers in high- and low-income countries, and bicultural professionals from the diaspora community.