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Policy Information

Mental Health

Published: 25 July 2019
From: Department of Health


It is estimated that one in four people in Ireland will experience some mental health problems in their lifetime. Mental health problems can range from a low or sad period to a more serious depression. Some people go on to experience severe mental health problems.

Mental health affects everyone. The government is focused on achieving and maintaining optimum mental health in Ireland.

As part of Sl√°intecare, the government aims to enhance mental health services in local communities. This will ensure help and support is nearby if and when people need it.

Read more about mental health services and find your local service.

A Vision for Change

The government wants to develop a modern, recovery orientated mental health service. The most recent national policy framework for mental health, A Vision for Change, is currently being updated.

As a first step in this process, an expert evidence review was completed in February 2017. This provided valuable domestic and international evidence to determine the policy direction for an updated Vision for Change.

An Oversight Group was also established to review A Vision for Change and to update existing mental health policy. This group is independently chaired.

The group focused on developing measurable outcomes within a patient-centred care framework. It engaged in a major national stakeholder consultation and collected additional information from stakeholder statements made to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Future of Mental Healthcare in Ireland. These national consultations concluded in August 2018.

Additional research was completed and policies from other government departments were incorporated into the updated Vision for Change document.

The updated policy will be published shortly.

Suicide Prevention

Ireland's national strategy to reduce suicide is called Connecting for Life. The strategy sets out a vision of an Ireland where fewer lives are lost through suicide, and where communities are empowered to improve their mental health.

The National Office for Suicide Prevention co-ordinates the strategy.

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