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Title A Study on Policy for Supporting Mental Health of Women in Seoul
Editor Admin Data 2015.06.30 View 2338
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A Study on Policy for Supporting Mental Health of Women in Seoul



Lee, Sun Hyoung
Research Fellow, Policy Research Department



The main purpose of this study is to seek for advanced mental health services to support women in all age groups in Seoul. To achieve this purpose, a thorough review on not only mental health indicators regarding depression, distress and suicidal behavior but also city health services concerned with women's mental health has been carrie out based on gender and life course. In-depth interviews have also been conducted in which field experts on women's mental health and women who have been with mental health issues have been given the in-depth interviews, to discover any individual and structural threats to their mental health and their demand for mental health services.

It has been learned through this study that recovery of relations between women and family, friends, and local community is the key to improvement of women's mental health. To be specific, based on women's life course, it is important to develope mental health services that reduce teenage women's stigma and provide right to health prior to education. It has been studied, on the other hand, that women in their 20s and 30s are less likely to benefit from city's mental health services though they are most vulnerable to depression, distress, suicidal behavior. It shows that depression of women in their 40s and 50s is mainly caused by motherhood ideology and struggle to balance between work and family, while women from single headed family go through depression usually caused by their low income, lack of time and dual poverty. Women over 60s are exposed to more anxiety and fear of poverty, solitude, and death compared to the other age groups.

As a result, this study has learned ways to improve Seoul women's mental health based on their life course. First, it is necessary to improve women's health capability. Second, it is important to adopt historical and integrative approaches on mental health issues. Third, eliminating current social gap in health based on gender is also crucial. Last but not least, it is highly required to build stronger infrastructure to improve women's mental health.

The importance of this study is that it has studied advanced future health services to improve women's mental health through cross-sectional analysis on mental health policy and family policy. Also, it has addressed that there is a strong connection between women's mental health and different generations and life course of women by adopting life-course approach. Yet, further research with an in-depth analysis is still needed on individuals' mental health and their life course.

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