The Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID) is a public entity within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, responsible to the Secretary of State for International Cooperation and for Latin America (SECIPI). Under the International Development Cooperation Act 23/1998, of 7 July 1998, AECID is the governing body for Spanish policy on international development cooperation, and its fundamental aim, according to the AECID statutes, is to promote, manage and implement public policies for international development cooperation, with particular emphasis on reducing poverty and achieving sustainable human development in developing countries, as defined in each four-yearly AECID Master Plan. Combating poverty is the ultimate goal of Spanish policy for international development cooperation, as part of Spain’s overall foreign policy, and AECID’s actions are based on the belief that interdependence and solidarity are essential elements of international society.
The Millennium Declaration and the Millennium Development Goals constitute a programme and a methodology common to all in the fight against poverty, and so they are the main points of reference for Spanish international cooperation policy.
The Spanish Cooperation, through the nongovernmental organisation Sanitary Religious Federation and the ¢nancing of the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation conducted an assessment of the mental health care system in Equatorial Guinea in 2009. There was no specific mental health policy in place, and no formalised mental health care system. A National Mental Health Policy has recently been approved, and an implementation plan was made by the government and nongovernmental organisations. The plan focuses on integration of mental health into primary care, through capacity building and sensitisation.
The implementation is still in the initial phase, and the scaling up process is expected to be slow.
To read the article entitled, Integrating mental health into primary care in Africa: the case of Equatorial Guinea, click here.