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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 8-13

Critique of the Mental Health System in Nepal, COVID-19 Response, and Recommendations

1 Milken Institute of Public Health, George Washington University, Washington, DC, USA
2 Yale University, New Haven, CT 06520, USA

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Mona Thapa
Yale University, New Haven, CT 06520
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/wsp.wsp_78_20

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Nepal has a multitiered health system involving the Ministry of Health, nongovernmental organizations, private for profit, and faith-based organizations. There are national, district, and community-level health centers and health workers that come together to deliver services and input information into both the community and national level health information systems. In terms of mental health, there is a very small portion of the budget allocated to mental health and very few mental health interventions and programs. The system has strengths including that the service delivery is put together in an effective manner and there is some mental health integration in primary care and in the health information system. However, there are weaknesses including that there needs to be an increase in the number of health workers and the training given to the workforce to further integrate mental health and there also needs to be more attention brought to mental health overall. Nepal's COVID-19 response highlighted weaknesses within its health system, especially in the context of its essential medicine products. The COVID-19 response from Nepal was especially hindered by a shortage of medical supplies, personal protective equipment, medications, and coronavirus tests.

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