Mental health a global focus on 10 October
Mental Health

Mental health a global focus on 10 October

The World Health Organisation is urging governments to make mental health care a reality for all people on World Mental Health Day, 10 October. The day falls within Queensland Mental Health Week which runs from 9 October to 17 October.

One-in-two Australians will suffer from a mental illness in their lives and sadly suicide is the leading cause of death for people aged 15 – 24.  In addition, 25% of people will experience an anxiety condition in their lives [1] with three million Australians living with anxiety or depression.

COVID-19 and mental heath

COVID-19 has had a major impact on mental health across the globe with many industries being significantly impacted. Frontline health workers, teachers, tourism and hospitality workers have been among the hardest hit as the restrictions gripped their industries [2].

Unfortunately, some mental health services have been disrupted throughout this period with lockdowns and restrictions making it challenging for people with mental health conditions to maintain healthy habits. Doctors recommend exercise and embracing nature as key elements of improving mental health.

The impact of isolation

Sadly, lockdown and travel restriction has made it challenging for people to connect face to face with their family, friends and colleagues. People working from home may not have any face-to-face contact in their day which can increase feelings of isolation.

Isolation can exacerbate the symptoms of depression – which include a loss of energy, feelings of worthlessness, guilt, and hopelessness. Instability can unsettle people with pre-existing mentally health conditions [3].

COVID-19 and connectivity

One positive development that has come out of the COVID-19 pandemic is that hospitals have embraced technology as a way of maintaining connectivity with patients and their families. Connectivity is a key a feature of The Common Good’s plans for the ICU of the Future project as we recognise both the mental and physical benefits resulting from connectivity.  While 90% of patients survive their time in ICU, many suffer from long and short-term problems such as delirium, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. The ICU of the Future is looking to create a more patient-friendly environment, reducing noise and giving patients and their families more privacy.

Dogs lift spirits

Not all mental health treatments involve technology. Therapy dogs have been called in to lift the spirits of patients at The Prince Charles Hospital. The dogs have a calming effect and research has shown they can lower blood pressure and heart rates and reduce muscle tension and fatigue.  Dogs have can also help reduce feelings of stress and encourage people to relax.

Optimism out of the pandemic

It has been more than 18 months since the start of the pandemic and the World Health Organisation (WHO) can see cause for optimism. Globally governments are scaling up the quality of their mental health services. Many have endorsed WHO’s Comprehensive Mental Health Action Plan 2013 – 2030 which provides key targets to evaluate progress and impact.  At its core is a principle that there is ‘no health without mental health’.

Queensland Mental Health Week events

Queensland Health is offering a range of events during Queensland Mental Health Week, including gardening workshops, community wellbeing sessions and the Queensland Mental Health Achievement Awards. Click here for more information.

How you can help

The Common Good is investing in mental health research and we would always welcome more public support.  When you to back our mental health research teams, every dollar you donate is directed towards research into this area.  You can help us make a difference here.

If you need some help

Please reach for assistance:

Lifeline: 13 11 14

Beyond Blue: 1300 224 636

Beyond Blues corona virus support service:  1800 512 348

Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800

Headspace: 1800 650 890


[1] Queensland Health (2021) Queensland Mental Health Week Media Kit

[2] World Health Organisation (2021) https://www.who.int/campaigns/world-mental-health-day/2021/about

[3] World Health Organisation (2021) Depression: what you should know

Published: October 8, 2021

Related news & events

Mother-of-four shares story of transplant journey

Patient Stories

Mother-of-four shares story of transplant journey

A Queensland mother who was diagnosed with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis and Chronic Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis and later received a lung transplant, shares her story here.

Find out more

The journey from the Cycle of Giving to the Tour de Brisbane

The Common Good

The journey from the Cycle of Giving to the Tour de Brisbane

In 2006, Mary and Mal Long started an event called Cycle of Giving to show their gratitude to Mal’s donor family and medical team.

Find out more

Chain Reaction Challenge 2024: Helping Kids visiting The Prince Charles Hospital

The Common Good

Chain Reaction Challenge 2024: Helping Kids visiting The Prince Charles Hospital

In March, dozens of cyclists from Brisbane will take part in a 1000 km cycle in and around Adelaide for the Chain Reaction Challenge 2024.

Find out more

30-year-old heart transplant recipient’s journey to the 2024 Tour de Brisbane

Heart Disease

30-year-old heart transplant recipient’s journey to the 2024 Tour de Brisbane

A Perth father who received a heart transplant three years ago is preparing to take part in the 2024 Tour de Brisbane. Read more about his journey and support his ride here.

Find out more

International Day of Women and Girls in Science 2024

The Common Good

International Day of Women and Girls in Science 2024

This February, we acknowledge International Day of Women and Girls in Science 2024 and some of the remarkable women who are making a difference in STEM.

Find out more

Marfan and Aortopathy Conference Brisbane 2024

The Common Good

Marfan and Aortopathy Conference Brisbane 2024

The Marfan and Aortopathy Conference Brisbane 2024 is on Saturday, April 20, at The Prince Charles Hospital. Click here for more details.

Find out more

What is Marfan Syndrome?

The Common Good

What is Marfan Syndrome?

What is Marfan Syndrome? It affects about 1 in 5000 people across the globe, and for some, it can lead to serious or even life-threatening complications. Learn more here.

Find out more

The Café for The Common Good finds new home at Caboolture Hospital

Social Enterprise

The Café for The Common Good finds new home at Caboolture Hospital

Caboolture Hospital Café: In exciting news, our café has a new home in the hospital’s recently opened Clinical Services Building.

Find out more

Take a walk down Memory Lane at The Prince Charles Hospital

Ageing

Take a walk down Memory Lane at The Prince Charles Hospital

At The Prince Charles Hospital, patients and their families are encouraged to take a trip down the newly completed ‘Memory Lane’. Read about the impactful project here.

Find out more