n South African Medical Journal - Mental healthcare in the community : CME - guest editorial

Volume 104, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



During the last decade or so, there has been a growing international recognition of the high burden of disease associated with mental health problems, with local research that supports this view. The most comprehensive study of common mental disorders in South Africa, the South African Stress and Health Study, carried out in 1999, showed a lifetime prevalence for these disorders of 30.3%. Of those who had had a mental disorder in the past year, only 25.2% sought treatment and a tiny number, 5.7%, used any formal mental health service. In the years since that study, the HIV/AIDS and substance abuse epidemics have contributed further to this burden, while at the same time mental health services have seen a reduction in hospital beds with de-institutionalisation, yet little growth in community-based services.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error