Mental Public Health

In the last decade, mental health has become one of the biggest challenges in public health. Children and adolescents in particular more often report feeling sad and less satisfied with life. The number of psychiatric diagnoses and the use of medicine are also increasing. The mental health has considerable importance for learning and development of the individual child, and on a long term basis it may have considerable impact on developing the child’s potential and contribution to society as an adult. We know very little about the complex causes and even less about which initiatives could be effective in different contexts. At the same time, there is a need to shed light on the challenges and possibilities in the technological development within the field of mental health. 

In the research unit for mental public health we work across research disciplines and together with professionals on developing new knowledge in interaction with citizens. We strive to contribute to a constructive ecosystem connecting research with practice through different collaboration projects as well as communication and teaching activities.

Projects

Mindhood

A research programme for mental health among children and adolescents. Our focus is mental health based on the WHO definition, and development of research in collaboration with the children/adolescents and across professional environments. Read more at:

http://mindhood.au.dk

HealthD360

An innovative collaboration on health data creating value for the citizens. The ambition is to promote coherent and individual patient pathways by collecting data from the public healthcare system and linking them with data from citizens' smartphones and wearables. Read more at:

http://healthd360.dk

Nordic Life Course Research Initiative

In the last decade, we have developed a project database at Statistics Denmark collecting registry data from Denmark, Sweden, and Finland on more than 7 million citizens born from 1990 and onwards. The purpose of this initiative is to develop knowledge on how exposures in early life affect the later course of life. Read more at:

http://nordiclifecore.com

BørneUngeLiv

In collaboration with the Danish Commission for Health Education and Danish Municipalities, we develop the best methods to prevent failure to thrive among children. We established Skolesundhed.dk in 2007, which today comprises the entire period from before birth to adolescent life; the name has thus been changed to BørnUngeLiv.dk. Read more at:

https://www.boernungeliv.dk/

Aarhus Universitets Data, Innovations & Teknologi Folkesundheds Laboratorium

Future health will to a larger extent be centered around the citizen perspective and both the demographic and technological development will lead to new challenges in public health and the research field of public health. AUDIT is a scientific initiative across several research units and data management to develop new research methods to include the citizen perspective and to create value. Read more at: 

https://audit.au.dk/

Scientific milestones

  • We contribute substantially to the second version of the report from The Council of Health and Disease Prevention on mental health in children and adolescents; will be published by the end of 2019.
  • 3 PhD students in the research unit will hand in their theses by the end of 2021.

Methods

We work with ”life course” quantitative epidemiological methods based on the unique data infrastructure of data in registries, cohorts and questionnaires in the Nordic countries. For the last decade, we have worked with developing new types of dialogical designs based on the possibilities offered by the technology to collaborate with professionals and citizens. Our primary focus is the interaction with children and citizens and the development of ecosystems aiming at developing the interaction between knowledge for practice through new communication formats. We collaborate nationally and internationally with strong research environments on the development of next generation public health research.