ASEAN integration is likely to bring about a substantial change to this area in the new era; it can subsequently cause many problems as well. The characteristic differences among the GMS member countries in terms of trade and investment, social and cultural values, medical information and technology, and the living and work environment have become major problems associated with mental health disorders, which are usually identified as depression, stress, and substance abuse.
This literature review aims to identify and review the relationships among the key determinants affecting the mental health disorders of the GMS people. The study showed that the increasing number of mental health disorders has become a big burden for national healthcare expenditure. Therefore, the strong relationship among mental health, mental disorders, economic status, and financial issues has been addressed in many studies. Financial issues have become a major key to the wide prevalence of mental disorders in the GMS. In addition, health issues related to mental health disorders are also caused by the environment and other related factors and therefore a stable and a well-balanced environment is an indicator of healthy mental status. Moreover, the factors contributing to mental health disorders are significantly correlated with social inequalities, whereby high social inequalities bring about extreme mental risk. The economic, healthcare, social and environment problems in the GMS area should be solved through policy development, follow-up planning, strategic implementation, and collaboration among all related sectors, especially in terms of the economy, the environment, and healthcare.
Consequently, there are four key determinants that affect people’s lives, especially in terms of mental health, thus leading to mental health disorders: 1) economic; 2) healthcare; 3) environmental; and 4) social. Globalization and urbanization should follow sustainable development suggestion and concerns about the population’s health, especially regarding mental health.