Paraguay is a landlocked country in South America. It is a democratic low-middle-income nation, and the Ministry of Public Health and Social Welfare is responsible for its healthcare system. Mental health services receive just 1–2% of healthcare budgets, and there are only 1.6 psychiatrists per 100 000 inhabitants. There are insufficient resources to adequately assess and treat mental disorders in high-risk populations such as children, adolescents and prisoners. Despite several improvements to mental health policies within the past two decades, the nation still lacks a Mental Health Act and specific policies required to optimise the mental health of the population.