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Hire mental health workers | Nation

by kenya-tribune
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A report released by the World Health Organization on October 10, 2022 points out the challenges that the fight for mental health has been experiencing.

The report indicates that there are less than 400 psychiatrists in Kenya. It further notes that there is no clear work plan and no facilities to handle this condition. 

The Kenya National Commission on Human Rights estimates that 25 per cent and 40 per cent of outpatients and inpatients suffer from mental conditions.

This and other reports paint a grim picture of the situation the country finds itself in with regard to mental health, and that the earlier we start talking about this and the worrying trend of suicide cases, the better.

The discovery of four bodies of a young family in an apartment in Kentucky, United States of America, is heart-wrenching. 

Live in denial 

May I take this opportunity to convey my deepest condolences to the families of Gary Stanton and Njoki Muchemi for the loss of their loved ones. We live in denial and act as if everything is hunky-dory, which is which is often not the case. 

The government must move with speed to put in place measures to reduce — if not stop — the rising cases of suicide.

The government, through the Ministry of Education, should also include mental health in the school curriculum. This will enable learners to detect mental health problems in earlier stages and encourage more Kenyans to speak out. 

The Health ministry should have professionals at medical centres to help in rehabilitation of patients at affordable costs if not for free. 

This can only be done if the government allocates funding for this noble cause and employs more psychiatrists to curb this worrying trend. The county governments must make sure they employ professionals to respond to such cases.

Mr Okeyo is the founder of Bee Films.

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