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International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations

  • WHO estimates show untreated mental disorders account for 13% of the total global burden of disease.
  • IFPMA recognizes the need for both prevention strategies and increased investment to reduce the global burden of mental and neurological disorders.
  • IFPMA advocates targeted discrimination and stigma reduction efforts to facilitate mental and neurological disorders prevention strategies.
  • IFPMA calls on external stakeholders to identify opportunities to improve disease management in developing countries through innovative partnerships and address needs of people in developing world who lack access to mental health services.


Mental and neurological disorders are increasingly gaining stature on the global health agenda. The profiles of these diseases raise particular challenges: lack of physical and visible symptoms, complex biological factors, and an incomplete understanding of cause. At the same time, the global burden of brain disorders is rising. According to WHO estimates, major depressive disorder (MDD) is projected to be the leading cause of disease burden worldwide by 2030. However, global health advocates, donors and governments at large have dedicated sparse attention to this disease area.

IFPMA members believe reducing the burden of mental and neurological disorders relies on both timely diagnosis and treatment of disorders by health professionals through pharmacological and psychosocial interventions. Furthermore, successful screening relies on stigma reduction and better integration of health services.

Our Dialogue with the Experts

IFPMA met with top experts on mental and neurological disorders to discuss different opportunities and challenges this disease area currently faces. Click on the following links to find out the latest conversations on the mental and neurological disorders arena.

Dr. Shekhar Saxena, Director of the WHO Department on Mental Health and Substance Abuse (Youtube)
Peter Hongaard, Vice President for External and Scientific Affairs, Lundbeck (Youtube)
Professor Norman Sartorius, President, Association for the Improvement of Mental Health Programmes (Youtube)
Marc Wortmann, Executive Director Alzheimer’s Disease International (Youtube)

How can we fight illnesses we cannot see? Depression, Alzheimer’s disease, bipolar disorder, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are only a handful of the many illnesses which can negatively affect individuals’ mental health. Indeed, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates 1 of 4 people worldwide will suffer from a mental illness at some point in their lives, underscoring a need for countries to invest more in mental and neurological disorders prevention and awareness practices. Moreover, social stigma and discrimination are major blocks to implementing effective prevention and intervention strategies. The costs to society in terms of worker disability call for urgent action and coordinated efforts from all health partners to reverse current trends.