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Minister Hyssälä says conference results must be put into practice

Ministry of Social Affairs and Health
Publication date 14.1.2005 10.52
Press release -

Helsinki, 14 Jan: Finland and the member states of the European region warmly welcome the initiatives taken at the WHO ministerial conference held this week in the Finnish capital, Finnish Minister of Health and Social Services Liisa Hyssälä told journalists Friday.

The minister was speaking following the adoption by the conference of a declaration and action plan. Both are designed to tackle key problems in the field of mental health in the 52 nation WHO European region.

“We must make mental health an integral part of public health. Only in this way will we be able to reduce stigma and old fashioned attitudes that affect the entire field of mental health,” said the minister.

Ms Hyssälä said that there is an urgent need for proper mental health services located at the heart of communities. “But we must remember that mental health is not only a public health issue,” said the minister. She stressed that it is also a matter that touches all areas of society and involves a range of non-medical interventions.

The minister also underlined the need for carrying out the recommendations contained in the documents produced by the WHO conference. “Finland is committed to supporting the WHO on the follow-up of the documents adopted today.” She highlighted the need for such monitoring as a part of all mental health policies.

Liisa Hyssälä
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