Common mental disorders, such as depression and anxiety, are prevalent also in low- and middle-income countries (WHO World Mental Health Survey Consortium, 2004) and may result in disability and loss of economic productivity (Kawakami et al., 2012). Similar levels of depression have been reported in middle-income countries in Asia such as Myanmar, Sri Lanka, and Thailand (Mackinnon et al., 1998).
However, the promotion of workers’ mental health has been understudied in low- and middle-income countries. Nevertheless, there is a growing need to foster mental health at work, given that the productivity of companies/organizations and the whole society is affected by mental disorders in the workplace (Chopra, 2009)
The aim of this research is to test the following hypothesis: The policy frameworks, interventions, and capacity-building programs that have demonstrated applicability and effectiveness in Japan and other high-income countries will, with suitable cultural adjustments, be reliable, valid, applicable, and effective in several selected low- and middle-income Asian countries, i.e., Nepal, Vietnam, and Myanmar.
PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR Norito Kawakami, MD, DMSc, Professor, Department of Mental Health, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, Japan