We are on the cusp of a revolution in health care. There is a growing scientific consensus that mental illness is strongly linked to physical factors, and that the traditional silos that exist between mental and physical health practice are failing patients.
Mental health disorders are among the biggest causes of disability worldwide. Research shows that social stresses in early childhood, including poverty, maltreatment and abuse, are the most significant risks for depression and anxiety in adolescence, and adolescent mental illness is a risk for depression and anxiety in adult life.
The children’s hospital will be home to world-leading research into the mind-body link and the chain of cause and effect that connects early-life adversity to long-term mental illness – because understanding causality opens the door to prevention.
A deeper understanding of the biological and psychological causes of mental illness will enable better treatment, seeking to break the causal chain by which adversity leads to mental illness and poor life outcomes.Ed Bullmore
Head of psychiatry, University of Cambridge