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A Mental Health Promotion Network to Build Capacity and Reduce Inequalities for Workers and Unemployed – HEALTHY EMPLOYMENT / HE

Public Health Initiatives Programme (PT06 – EEA FM)

Area II: Improving mental health services

Sub-area (b): Promotion of mental health at workplaces and support to groups mostly affected by the economic crisis

This is a project supported by the EEA (European Economic Area) grants

European Economic Area Financial Mechanism 2009-2014

National Focal Point (NFP): Ministry of Environment, Portugal

Programme Operator (PO): Central Administration of Health System (ACSS), Ministry of Health, Portugal

Project Promoter: Faculty of Medicine, University of Lisbon (FMUL), Portugal / Institute of Environmental Health / Institute of Preventive Medicine & Public Health

The Portuguese National Health Plan 2012-2016 reinforces the importance of implementing specific projects aimed at additional health gains and reduction of health inequalities. Also the Occupational Health Plan, and the National Mental Health (MH) Plan and Program envisage some of the aims of this project, including the intersectoral articulation and the promotion of equity and access.

Stepping from local and regional to the national level, HEALTHY EMPLOYMENT seeks to reduce MH inequalities linked with employment instability and economic crisis. Through MH promotion and mental disorder prevention, interventions targeted to unemployed and temporary workers, and to professionals who deal with these populations are being prepared.

A capacity building process and an improvement of services coordination are expected, involving vulnerable citizens and professionals from health (primary health care, mental health services) and non-health sectors (employment, social security, municipalities).

The development of training and good practices manuals, evidence-based information to policy-making, MH equity impact assessment methodologies, recommendations for dissemination, the identification of a minimal set of indicators and the exchange of experiences and knowledge are expected to strengthen the bilateral collaboration and ties between Portugal and the Donor countries (Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein).

Within a mental health in all policies approach, a sustainable network is being established to allow reaching tangible common results among different Portuguese regions and realities and between North and Southern European countries.