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Mental health economic studies from developing countries reviewed in the context of those from developed countries

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Objective: Mental health economic studies from developing countries were reviewed in the context of such studies from developed countries.

Method: Mental health economic studies were ascertained through a systematic Medline search, chasing references at the end of papers acquired from the initial medline search and details of studies furnished by members of the WHO collaborating centre.

Results: Only a small number of mental health economic studies from developing countries were identified. They were mainly cost‐of‐illness and cost‐effectiveness studies.

Conclusion: Psychiatric disorders impose a significant burden in developing countries. It is not always possible to extrapolate findings from developed countries to developing countries. Potential avenues for future research and development are discussed.

Keywords: economics; mental disorders; mental health services

Document Type: Original Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Psychiatry, Imperial College School of Medicine, London and 2: WHO Collaborating Centre, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK

Publication date: February 1, 2000


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