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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 34  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 101-109

Mental health care in Sweden


Department of Neuroscience, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden

Correspondence Address:
Christer Allgulander
Östra Ågatan 51A, 75322 Uppsala
Sweden
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/TPSY.TPSY_29_20

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Background: Reforming psychiatric services in Sweden in the 1960s and 1970s caused a shift from inpatient to outpatient units. Methods: Besides my lifetime experiences in receiving training, teaching, and practicing psychiatry, I collected information from the literature pertinent to the mental health care in Sweden. Results: In this review, I have highlighted some of the more important mental health events in Sweden. The number of psychiatric beds in Sweden has reduced from 37,000 to 4,500. The national health insurance and the ethos of the welfare state have created an equitable and generous environment for patients who are mentally ill. The suicide rate has gone down over the last three decades. There has been a substantial increase in a Swedish diagnosis called exhaustion disorder (burnout), especially in medical staff, office workers, and in the schools. Also, against all predictions, children and adolescents increasingly report having aches, insomnia, and depressive symptoms. Diagnosis and treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder has increased substantially in the last 15 years. Moving from the International Classification of Diseases, version 9 (ICD-9) in the 1980s to ICD-11 and the DSM nosologies was accompanied by evidence-based guidelines, resulting in revised curricula for undergraduate and graduate training. Current researchers are showing a growing interest in autoimmune conditions that are comorbid with traditional psychiatric disorders. Neurovirology and psychiatry have an interface with the COVID-19 pandemic that will require an immediate action plan and collaborative efforts. Conclusion: Demographic changes due to increasing proportions of elderly and multiethnic populations, as well as the COVID-19 epidemic, will profoundly affect the future provision of services.


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