It’s time to prioritize brain health—here’s why

Nearly one billion (or one in eight) people had a mental disorder before the COVID-19 pandemic; the prevalence of anxiety and depression is believed to have increased between 25 and 30 percent worldwide since. The global disease burden is alarming: Mental and substance-use disorders are on par with cardiovascular diseases as one of the top three most burdensome conditions in our society. Research from McKinsey Health Institute (MHI) coleaders Erica Hutchins Coe, Kana Enomoto, and coauthors—in collaboration with the Healthy Brains Global Initiative—shows that earlier interventions and treatments could help mitigate the burden of these disorders, which grow with age if not managed appropriately, and unlock over 150 million years of higher quality of life worldwide. On World Mental Health Day, dive into these insights from MHI to understand why it’s crucial for society to make the mindset shift to treating brain health conditions with the same urgency, skill, and compassion as other health conditions.

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