Guiding principles

  • Collaboration between mental health workers (however defined) in different parts of the world;
  • Collaboration with stakeholders;
  • Collaboration with persons with mental health problems, families and carers;
  • Pragmatic attitude: focus on the evidence base, including approaches that are culturally appropriate (e.g. traditional, complementary and alternative medicine);
  • Integrated care: supporting interventions aimed at improving the physical health of people with mental health problems and the mental health of people with long-term physical illness;
  • Context matters: adaptation to local values, preferences, cultural traditions, modes of help-seeking, feasibility issues, etc.;
  • Critical thinking on the evidence base: quality assessment and risk of bias, clinical relevance (confidence in estimates), transfer of evidence generated in Western countries to non-Western settings;
  • Public mental health approach: focus on promotion and preventive actions to reduce the risk of mental disorders.