Which Country Has the Best Mental Health Services in the World?

Recent research by William Russell has revealed that certain countries are better equipped to promote psychological well-being than others. France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Finland, Norway, the Netherlands and India are all nations that have been identified as having excellent mental health services. When it comes to work-life balance, Sweden is a clear leader. With an average temperature of 2.1°C, the Nordic nation offers its citizens plenty of green spaces to de-stress in.

This is complemented by a strong culture of work-life balance, with only 1.1 percent of the population working long hours and around 15 hours a day dedicated to leisure and personal care. Swedes also benefit from public health insurance that covers all employees, equivalent to 31.42 percent of their gross income. Germany ranks third after France and Norway in terms of public spending on mental health services. Finland offers an online therapy service, Mental Health Hub, that helps patients with depression, alcohol abuse and a wide range of anxiety disorders.

The national online portal is funded by the government and the Helsinki hospital district. France also has the highest level of healthcare spending in Europe, followed closely by Norway. Medical and psychological centers provide much of the mental health care in France, and these centers generally offer free services that are covered by the health insurance plan. The Netherlands is another nation that ranks highly when it comes to mental health services. Chosen as the fifth happiest country in the Annual World Happiness Report and the best country in terms of work-life balance, Dutch employees rarely work overtime (0.4 percent of workers) compared to other European countries.

Instead, they dedicate about 16 hours a day to activities other than work. Although the Netherlands lacks green spaces, it has always ranked well in the European Health Consumer Index when it comes to its health system, which is partially financed by taxes and includes mental health care. Norway is another nation that has excellent mental health services. With high annual rainfall and an average temperature of 1.5°C, expatriates in Norway are particularly satisfied with their work-life balance. The nation ranks third in the world according to an Expat Insider survey conducted by Internations, which highlighted that expatriates in Norway work 1.4 hours less than expatriates in other countries of the world.

Norwegian employees spend an average of 15.6 hours on personal care or leisure and are fortunate to have one of the best social security systems in the world. India is also known for its excellent mental health services. The country has consciously developed its medical infrastructure to provide first-class medical facilities with some of the best doctors in the world at affordable costs. Community centers are the access point and also the social, planning and care approach of the mental health system. State governments have taken advantage of deinstitutionalization to reduce liability and costs for patients returning from a mental health hospital. In conclusion, there are many countries around the world that offer excellent mental health services for their citizens and expatriates alike.

Sweden is a clear leader when it comes to work-life balance while Germany, Finland, France, Norway, The Netherlands and India all have excellent public spending on mental health services as well as strong social security systems.

Jeanette Kunzler
Jeanette Kunzler

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