Accessing Mental Health Services in Africa: Current state, efforts, challenges and recommendation.
The COVID-19 pandemic brought to the surface the dwindling state of mental health services in Africa. While most countries have policies targeted at mental health problems, these policies are often weak and outdated to combat the present challenges. Africa faces various challenges in mental health delivery, ranging from inadequate staffing to sociocultural stigma and lack of effort from the government in terms of policies and funding. Many countries do not have the budgetary allocation for mental health. while those with budgetary allocation spend less than 5% of government health expenditure on mental health. Considering the continent's socioeconomic difficulties, it is almost a given that mental health illnesses will be on the rise. The continent's growing population, which is majorly youth, means that mental health services will be in high demand in the coming years. Therefore, the relevant stakeholders must look into the challenges and respond with a sense of urgency.