Healthcare is an important area of life. Any economy or country cannot survive without healthcare institutions. Every country or system tried to build a healthy system to secure its survival. To maintain and deliver healthcare facilities is a difficult task and every country maintain and deliver healthcare facilities to the population in a different and specific manner. The factors which determine the delivery of healthcare facilities in a country or region includes the background and culture of the country, the amount of money and forces the country places on different outcomes.
The topic selected for this comparison and contrast discussion essay is mental health assistance provided to children and adults in the Netherlands, the United States and Canada and the role of pill testing or drug testing in reducing harm related to drugs. Mental problems alludes to various mental health conditions including change in reflection, alteration in mood connected with discomfort and undermining operation. Mental illness examples are anxiety, mood disorders, eating disorders, sleeping disorders and schizophrenia. A range of people face mental health issues occasionally but mental issues becomes a disease when symptoms influence the ability to operate or work properly(1).
Professionals provide mental health and addiction services. Support can be provided by psychologists, friends, parents and nurses in hospitals and at home. Mental health and addiction (MHA) services scale from depression, substances abuse disorder, anxiety, to severe conditions. The national focus on services related to mental health is very little. In the United States, large-level change in present health insurance schemes have been interweave including the Affordable Care Act and Congressional bills.
Factors for addressing Mental Health Concerns
Problems related to mental health are highly common and can affect the health of children and youth. 21.4% of youth ranging from 13-18 years have serious mental illness in the US. In Canada, 29% of youth ranging from 13-19 years have issues related to mental health.
On the lives of youth, mental diseases have a serious impact. Worldwide, the leading cause of death is suicide among youth. The economic burden of mental illness in Canada is fifty-one billion dollars per year which include productivity loss, health care cost. Families of such children and adults with mental illness also experience stress, anxiety and depression which affect their daily life and results in financial and employment challenges.
In countries such as Canada, the Netherlands and the US to address the mental health issues changes and implementation to the organizations are developed. In Canada, the federal government have made many efforts to increase the availability of better health services. The Canada’s Commission of Mental Health was created in 2007 to highlight the problematic areas. To support mental health services Federal Government promised five billion dollars over ten years in 2017. Twenty-five million dollars were committed in the 2019 budget to support the development of the Technology-based Pan-Canadian Suicide Prevention Service(2).
The Netherlands, Canada and the US have an almost similar level of social profiles, development and health care system and perceived needs of mental health services are also the same. All provinces of Canada have introduced individual mental health strategies. Mental health become a health priority in the US. The office of Health Promotion address access to improve mental health and wellbeing.
Health Care Insurance Schemes:
In the US, the Netherlands and Canada an array of mental health facilities are financed by private and public funds. In Canada, government funded health insurance is given to all citizens. On contrary, youth can receive insurance from these means including Medicaid which is a health care program for poor people, Private health insurance and the children’s health care program (CHIP) in the US.
Through private insurance providers private insurance is provided in the Netherlands. There are two insurance systems in the Netherlands including compulsory insurance for poor individuals and voluntary insurance for average individuals.
Primary Health Care
Main component of the health care system is Primary Health Care in all three countries. In the Netherlands, to increase treatment accessibility there is a focus on integrating psychological services with the help of introducing mental health professionals into primary health care.
Some Canadian provinces also focus on primary health care. Thirty-eight percent of people in Canada with mental problems or drug use problems shows symptoms in early ages. Mental health problems mostly started in childhood or adulthood and primary care and interventions can prevent severity(3). Referral to specialist mental health services are required in Canada and the Netherlands while in the US referral to special mental health facilities are not needed.
Pill testing is a strategy to reduce harm and enables people who take illicit drugs to chemically analysed substances and recognise the nature and concentration of specific substances and contents. Mental illness is highly related to drug-taking and mental illness results in increased drug addictions. The rate of youth using illicit drugs is increasing day by day(4).
In Australia, pill testing is getting support from the medical association. Pill testing is a way of analysing the harm related to the intake of the drug and it is a source of spreading awareness among youth.
In the three identified countries children and adults mental health has been a major concern in recent times. Significant reforms are made to improve the availability of mental health care services. Obstacles in the utilization of mental health care utilization by youth and children must be reduced all over the world. In all three countries, general practitioners are the main sources of delivering basic health care. Referral to specialist services requirements is different in these countries. A worldwide access is required to identify better practices in improving mental health care services in adults and children. Reforms within these states should continue to improve. Pile testing is a source of spreading awareness in youth.
1. Moroz N, Moroz I, D’Angelo MS. Mental health services in Canada: barriers and cost-effective solutions to increase access. In: Healthcare management forum. SAGE Publications Sage CA: Los Angeles, CA; 2020. p. 282–7.
2. Ronis ST, Slaunwhite AK, Malcom KE. Comparing strategies for providing child and youth mental health care services in Canada, the United States, and the Netherlands. Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research. 2017;44(6):955–66.
3. Abuse S. Key substance use and mental health indicators in the United States: results from the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. 2020;
4. Scott IA, Scott RJ. Pill testing at music festivals: is it evidence‐based harm reduction? Internal Medicine Journal. 2020;50(4):395–402.