On Wednesday 12 April 2017, the symposium Mental Health in Europe: Promoting Equal Opportunities and Social Participationwas held at Thon Hotel in Brussels. The meeting gathered delegates from various health industries and organizations, academics and MEPs to discuss the prevention, detection, and treatment of mental health difficulties. Among other key topics of discussion were: exploring innovative approaches to prevent and handle mental health issues in the workplace, promoting cross-sectoral cooperation, exploring ways to increase the visibility of mental health issues in the society, determining how to improve the accessibility of existing support services and building strong partnerships with relevant stakeholders in the public and private sector.

The meeting provided an excellent platform to discuss prevention and treatment of mental health disorders and exchange on best practice interventions. It also raised the importance of promoting  equal opportunities for people with mental health problems, in particular in the workplace. For EBC it was an opportunity to showcase the Value of Treatment for mental and neurological [Brain] Disorders research project and highlight preliminary findings and forthcoming evidence-based recommendations with regards to early intervention. « Not Myself today », a flagship initiative of EBC was also highlighted.

Key speakers of the meeting were:

Julie Ward, Member of the European Parliament
George Szmukler, Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry and Society Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience King’s College London
Aagje Ieven, Secretary General, EUFAMI
Dr Inge Neyens, Senior Researcher, LUCAS KU Leuven
Maria Nyman, Director, Mental Health Europe
Chris Nas, Senior Policy Advisor, Department Trimbos International, Trimbos Institute
Martin Jefflén, President, EUROCADRES
Rene Keet, Director, Community Mental Health Service Noord-Holland-Noord
Joanna Hofman, Research Leader, RAND Europe
Jo Loughran, Director of Operations, Time to Change

For more information on the event, including the full program, click here.