World Health Day is celebrated on April 7th every year to mark the anniversary of the founding of the World Health Organisation (WHO), providing an opportunity for the WHO to mobilise action around a specific health topic of concern to people all over the world.
Common mental disorders are increasing worldwide. Between 1990 and 2013, the number of people suffering from depression and/or anxiety increased by nearly 50%. Close to 10% of the world’s population is affected by one or both of these conditions. Depression alone accounts for 10% of years lived with disability globally.
Depression affects people of all ages, from all walks of life, in all countries. It causes mental anguish and impacts on people’s ability to carry out even the simplest everyday tasks, with sometimes devastating consequences for relationships with family and friends and the ability to earn a living. At worst, depression can lead to suicide, now the second leading cause of death among 15-29-year olds.
The overall goal of the WHO’s 2017 campaign is that more people with depression, in all countries, seek and get help.