Scientists Warn of Overwhelming Costs of Mental Illness

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Health systems could be “overwhelmed” by the costs of coping with mental illnesses such as dementia, depression and addiction if nothing is done now to boost investment in research, leading neuroscientists said on Thursday.

Publishing a study that put the estimated costs of brain disorders in Britain alone at more than 112 billion pounds ($172 billion) a year, they said mental illness research needed to attract the same funding levels as illnesses such as cancer and heart diseases to be able to reduce the burden.

“No group of chronic diseases costs the world more than brain disorders,” said Barbara Sahakian, a professor at Cambridge University and president of the British Association of Psychopharmacology.

by Kate Kelland, Reuters

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