Shared Value Initiative Hong Kong Community Sets Vision and Roadmap for Mental Health Initiative

By SVIHK

Last month, we convened eight diverse organisations to define a shared vision and high-level roadmap for tackling the mental health problem in Hong Kong, at a Vision-setting and Scoping Workshop delivered by Accenture. From the Advisory Panel Meeting, SVIHK founding members and advisors emerged with a unified vision rooted in common areas of concern:

VISION FOR SVIHK MENTAL HEALTH INITIATIVE

“To address current gaps in prevention, diagnosis, de-stigmatisation, treatment and support,
we aim to restore hope and refocus on the mental well-being of individuals in Hong Kong
by creating shared value.”

Based on this, fourteen participants from these organisations then engaged in a Design Thinking process to co-create creative and actionable solutions for mental health that bring value to both society and business. These ideas covered the lifecycle of mental health issues, from Prevention, Diagnostic and De-stigmatisation, to Treatment, Care and Support – extending even to caregivers, beyond the patient. Ideas also reached across the spectrum of mental health and illnesses, covering workplace stress, anxiety disorders, elderly loneliness and withdrawal, clinical depression, youth issues, suicide prevention and more.  

While the shortlisted ideas are many and varied, below is a sampling of the simpler ideas that organisations can more easily explore and implement with a shared value approach:

    • Replicate successful mental health peer ambassador programs at work to facilitate ongoing education, awareness and a safe space for related conversations
    • Enhance medical insurance benefits for employees to cover mental health, still rare in Hong Kong, and increase employee awareness and usage of Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)
    • Expand the definition of who can diagnose mental illness, given the shortage of psychiatrists and certified healthcare professionals in Hong Kong, by equipping GPs, counsellors, etc.
    • Alleviate issues of long wait times for few mental health professionals in Hong Kong through telemedicine and similar models
    • Expedite diagnosis and triage of patients via artificial intelligence (AI) tools
    • Create education and engagement programs at work, at schools and for consumers on mental health, to normalise the issues and facilitate detection
    • Design workplace policies, activities and norms that reduce stress, prevent escalation, reduce stigma and promote mental well-being

In the process, SVIHK guided participants to consider the business value and measurability of each idea, to ensure all shortlisted solutions – well beyond these examples – indeed qualify as shared value concepts, while recognising that philanthropic activities, human resources campaigns or corporate social responsibility programs can also be valid for certain cases.

As the next step, SVIHK Founding Members will each develop one or more ideas into viable ventures and business propositions for their own organisation during The Intrapreneur Lab workshop on Mental Health, sponsored by Barclays, on 26-28 September. In addition, Members will continue to develop ideas in-house into actionable programs, with the support of SVIHK peer sharing sessions and tri-sector partnerships.