deliberations on mental health include a strong emphasis on mental health promotion and prevention of mental illness.
To work toward developing a comprehensive strategy to address promotion and prevention in mental health, 29 European countries have formed the European Network for Mental Health Promotion and Mental Disorder Prevention. The aim of the network is to serve as an information resource to disseminate evidence-based knowledge and tools and to develop integrated approaches to training, policy, and implementation (Jané-Llopis and Anderson, 2006). Individual countries have linked their prevention programs to the shared policies of the European Union. This includes an emphasis on prenatal programs and a healthy start in life, along with early education programs, which are generally more developed and available than in the United States (Jané-Llopis and Anderson, 2006). In addition, many countries are working to integrate mental health promotion and prevention efforts both with the systems that address physical health and with antipoverty programs, recognizing that poverty is a major factor in the development of MEB disorders (Jané-Llopis and Anderson, 2005).
Many European countries experience challenges to translating this interest in promotion and prevention into action; these challenges are similar to those described in this report, including financing, infrastructure, and implementation support (Jané-Llopis and Anderson, 2006). However, there are also notable successes in nationwide implementation and comprehensive national approaches in Europe and elsewhere that offer promising models from which lessons can potentially be learned.
Some countries have undertaken nationwide or widespread implementation of specific evidence-based programs. For example, Parent Management Training, a program originally developed in the United States, has been adapted in Norway and implemented nationwide through the creation of a national implementation and research center that coordinates training for providers, supervision, consultation, and research in support of implementation with strong partnership at the regional and local levels (Ogden, Forgatch, et al., 2005).
Australia has launched a National Mental Health Promotion, Prevention, and Early Intervention Action Plan (Commonwealth Department of Health and Aged Care, 2000) as part of a multiyear effort to position mental heath as a new strategic direction. It includes the implementation of multiple policies and programs as part of a national effort. As a component of a national initiative on depression, the Triple P Program (a multilevel parenting program; see Chapter 6) was tested on a population level in multiple Australian communities. It demonstrated significant reductions in the number of children with recognizable and borderline behavioral and emotional problems and the number of parents who reported depression,