EMERALD: Emerging mental health systems in low- and middle-income countries

EMERALD is a five-year programme (2012-17) to improve mental health outcomes in six low- and middle-income countries (Ethiopia, India, Nepal, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda). It aims to strengthen mental health system performance by identifying key barriers to the effective delivery of mental health services and offering solutions for improvement. There is a strong focus on capacity-building of researchers, policy-makers and planners to implement system improvements for mental health care services, and on working towards greater involvement of service users and caregivers.

Specifically, the EmeraldProject aims to identify key health system barriers to, and solutions for, the scaled-up delivery of mental health services in LAMICs, and by doing so improve mental health outcomes in a fair and efficient way. It does so by pursuing the following objectives:

Objective 1: Adequate, fair and sustainable resourcing (health system inputs): To identify health system resources, financing mechanisms and information needed to scale-up mental health services and move towards universal coverage.

Objective 2: Integrated service provision (health system processes): To evaluate the context, process, experience and health system implications of mental health service implementation.

Objective 3: Improved coverage and goal attainment (health system outputs): To develop, use and monitor indicators of mental health service coverage and system performance.

Underlying all of these health system objectives, there is a further fundamental need: To enhance local capacities and skills to plan, implement, evaluate and sustain system improvements. The Emerald Project is committed to taking the mental health system strengthening steps necessary to address these objectives in Ethiopia, India, Nepal, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda through a consortium of 12 partners in Africa, Asia and Europe.