There is increasing evidence that suggests that mental health problems affect 10-20 per cent of children and adolescents worldwide. Despite the increasing contribution of mental health to the total burden of disease and the impacts of mental disorders, policies, plans and programs to address mental health has been given less attention, particularly in low resource poor settings. Ghana is one such setting. Addressing the burden of poor mental health poses many challenges at the public health level in Ghana. This capstone presents a narrative review of the existing literature to identify barriers to improving mental health care services and, particularly, to discuss their relevance to child and adolescent mental health in Ghana. Key barriers identified include: the low priority attached to mental health service delivery as a public health issue, scarcity of resources for mental health, inequities in access to mental health care and the lack of collaboration formal and informal health providers. Recommendations for overcoming these barriers centered on the need to increase political will, the need for greater advocacy and clear policy and legislation to reduce the unmet needs to children and adolescents in Ghana.
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