The First Lady for Coherent and Public Policy on Mental Health
- Monday, October 10, 2011 9:42 PM
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (defend.ht) - October 10, 2011. The First Lady of the Republic, Sophia Martelly, officially opened the Mental Health Week, Monday, with the Ministry of Public Health and Population (MSPP), as part of the occasion of World Mental Health Day, at a ceremony under the theme: "A great effort: Investing in Mental Health."
Attended by the Minister of Public Health, Alex Larsen, Representative of Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) (WHO) , Peter Jan Graaff, representatives of medical associations and health personnel, Ms. Sophia Martelly reiterated her commitment to improving the lives of the mentally ill. On this occasion the WHO has made the delivery to the MSPP of the report, Assessment in Mental Health Systems (WHO-AIMS) in Haiti, a document conceptualized and developed by the Department of Mental Health Mental Health Evidence and Research Team (MER), providing a baseline for better planning of mental health interventions using clear data from needs.
The health sector suffers from serious mental problems including the lack of an information system in mental health, a formal public awareness campaign and a budget to meet the current requirements in this area (only 1% of health budget is allocated to mental health). Medical facilities in mental health are mostly private. Only two psychiatric hospitals are public. Less than 20% of hospitals have psychiatrists. Only 3% of hours of medical school in Haiti deal with mental health.
Faced with such situations, the First Lady believes a large effective public action to a mental health system more dynamic, able to reduce the rate of patients.
To mark this day, she went to two public centers, the street and Oswald Durant et Ã Beudet (Croix des Bouquets) to inquire about the situation and collect recommendations. She presented plaques to honor individuals who have great work for the mentally ill with Max Desrosiers, the first resident of the University Hospital of Psychiatry in Mars and Kline, Dr. Chavannes Douyon, the first psychologist Nadia Delsoin, the first social worker.
The day before the event, through an audio message, the First Lady communicated her concerns vis-Ã -vis environmental health. Her message reflects a set of problems facing the sector, including the absence of a mental health policy in Haiti, a strategic plan for mental health, specific legislation, a guide and a protocol for mental health.
Mental health, as health in general is a priority of the First Lady who agreed to do so alongside the Head of State.
Official Correspondence from the Office of the First Lady of the Republic of HaÃ¯ti
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