Alzheimer Europe has responded to a European Commission call for evidence on a proposed initiative of a comprehensive approach to mental health. The initiative had been announced by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen during her State of the EU speech in November 2022.
The initiative will set out:
• How action at EU level can help promote good mental health and prevent, mitigate and respond to mental health challenges
• How mental health considerations should be factored into a wide variety of resilient EU and national policies for the benefit of people across the EU.
In its response, Alzheimer Europe welcomed the Commission’s decision to act in this area and acknowledged the context approach of the initiative within the scope of the EU’s existing programmes and those of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). However, the response also highlighted some potential issues, which were felt to need specific attention in the development of the initiative, including:
• Encouraging the Commission to ensure that the initiative more closely reflects the work of the WHO in mental health, to include dementia
• Highlighting the omission of carers despite the impact of caregiving roles on mental health, especially during the pandemic
• Noting that the scope of the proposed targets and indicators for the initiative are too narrow and do not cover goals which should be part of the initiative.
Alzheimer Europe’s full response to the call for evidence can be found at: https://www.alzheimer-europe.org/policy/positions/european-commission-mental-health-initiative