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Salima Reflects on Mental Health Problems

Traditional leaders in Salima have been implored to take an active role in sensitizing their subjects about mental health issues which is becoming a serious public health issue of concern.

District Medical Officer for Salima, Dr. George Kasondo, said this on the sidelines of a community awareness meeting on mental health in the district.

The meeting was organized by the Malawi Council for the Handcapped-MACOHA.

Dr. Kasondo said unless members of the public are made aware of mental health issues and the fact that they can be treated, this will remain a challenge in the district.

“We have not yet integrated into our systems, the way we perceive these conditions. These people face a lot of challenges. They are neglected in the society worsening their problems,” he said.

The medic blames continued stigma and discrimination for increased cases of mental illnesses some of which have ending in suicide.

Meanwhile MACOHA Mental Health Project Coordinator, Japhet Myaba, says there is need to get citizens understand and begin to take care of people with mental problems.

“We need to raise awareness in the community. People need to know signs of those contemplating suicide or just to know who has a mental health problem so that they can refer them to the hospital,” said Myaba.

Senior chief Kalonga of Salima has since pledged to take the lead in encouraging his subjects and fellow leaders to fight stigma and discrimination on people with mental health problems.

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Last modified on Tuesday, 10/12/2019

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