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Updated by roldfield on Oct 10, 2017
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Eight pillars of mental health

The eight pillars of mental health for the 21st century


Rebadging the system

The ‘mental healthcare’ system should be re-designated (and re-labelled) as primarily a system for emotional healthcare … because emotions (e.g. depression, anxiety, fear, guilt etc.) are the core experiences of most so-called ‘mental’ health problems.


Redefining the system’s boundaries

Redefining the system’s boundaries – in terms of both actual healthcare and popular perception – to exclude those who are not actually ill, such as (for example) those those with learning disabilities.


Replacing the medical/illness model with a contextual model.

Contextual healthcare centres on an awareness that problems don't exist in isolation, but instead arise from - and are connected to - each person’s unique self, life story and life circumstances. Not “what’s wrong with you?”, but rather “what’s happened to you?”

A reduced resort to drug-based treatments follows naturally from this.


Focusing on children and young people as the top demographic priority for attention.

This covers a wide range of needed changes, such as radically evolving the curriculum in schools and increasing the proportion of mental health spending on children and adolescents in comparison to that spent on adults.


Changing the spending ratio within the NHS budget.

Making more equitable the current 7: 1 ratio of bio physical vs psycho-emotional healthcare spending.


Seeing counsellors as THE key professionals


Restructuring, streamlining and simplifying of the system

This includes an increased focus on street-triage and the upskilling of Tier 1 workers.



This covers a wide range of needed changes, such as halting the pursuit (political, cultural and economic) of an ever-expanding production and consumption of products and services.