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About us

​​​​​About Us

What we do

The Programme for Improving Mental Healthcare (PRIME) is a consortium of research institutions and ministries of health in five countries in Asia and Africa (Ethiopia, India, Nepal, South Africa & Uganda), with partners in the UK and the World Health Organization (WHO). PRIME is supported by the UK government’s Department for International Development (DFID), and is a six year programme which was launched in May 2011.

Where we do it

South AfricaEthiopiaIndiaUgandaNepal

Why we do it

More than 13% of the global burden of disease is due to mental illness (includes mental, neurological and substance abuse disorders). Although the vast majority of people affected by mental illness live in low and middle-income countries (LMICs), most mental health care resources are located in high-income countries.

This lack of resources for effective treatment has contributed to a large ‘treatment gap’, i.e. up to 4 out of every 5 people with mental illness in LMIC go without mental health care.

With it's research, PRIME's teams work relentlessly to improve the coverage of treatment for priority mental disorders in it's study countries as well as other LMICs.

These guidelines are a practical tool that are intended to empower health care practitioners to deliver mental health services at the primary health care level. PRIME will work closely with Ministries of Health, health care providers, academic institutions and civil society organisations to set up ‘demonstration sites’ in each of the five countries. By generating research evidence aimed at integrating mental health care into primary and maternal health systems, PRIME aims to make a direct contribution to reducing the ‘treatment gap’ not only in the five PRIME countries, but also in other low resource settings.

Our partners

PRIME is a made up of an international group of mental health researchers and policy makers who are committed to improving mental health in low resource settings.

Partners involved in this diverse consortium include the World Health Organization, the Centre for Global Mental Health (incorporating London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and King’s Health Partners, UK), Ministries of Health and research institutions in Ethiopia (Addis Ababa University), India (Public Health Foundation of India), Nepal (TPO Nepal), South Africa (University of Cape Town, Perinatal Mental Health Project, University of Kwazulu-Natal & HSRC) and Uganda (Makerere University / Butabika Hospital); and international NGOs such as Healthnet TPO and Sangath.