Health Minister expresses concern over increasing mental health problem

Desiree Burns
October 13, 2018

For World Mental Health Day, musician and activist Lady Gaga helped to pen a powerful essay in The Guardian on the "emergency" of mental health crises and suicide around the world right now.

World Mental Health Day is a day when this can be observed and people can take action.

"But we need to do more to challenge the stigma that people with mental ill-health face and make sure they feel they can reach out for help".

The programme will include a series of educational awareness presentations and displays, social media discussion sessions, mental health-themed drawing and photography competitions for staff and their families, as well as a special health and wellness VIP event on the day itself.

Statistics from the World Health Organization indicate that in Africa about five per cent of the population aged below 15 years suffers from mental disorder.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death globally for young peope aged between 15 and 19, according to the report, which also suggested there is little difference reported in mental health services and support between countries of low and middle average incomes and those of high incomes.

He recommended continuous training for primary healthcare workers to enable them to detect and manage common mental health problems in community settings.

When experts convened for the third High-Level United Nations Meeting on Noncommunicable Diseases (NCDs) last month, one of the key takeaways was the recognition of mental health conditions as a cause for concern at the same level as other chronic conditions.

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The National Mental Health at Work report, commissioned by Business in the Community in partnership with Mercer, has found that 72% of LGBTQ+ people have experienced mental health issues as a result of work.

While there has been some progress, the authors urge governments to do more, writing that "mental health now receives less than 1 per cent of global aid".

"Youths needs to be taught healthy coping mechanisms and awareness of ways to look after their mental health", Kufre said.

"That is why the Liberal Democrats would ensure all young people can access Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services up to the age of 25, rather than 18 or 16".

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Campaigner Natasha Devon said the mental health first aiders would be trained in what to say and "crucially what not to say to someone who is struggling".

The Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health states that African Americans are 20% more likely to experience serious mental health problems than the general public.

The regional director maintained that mental health remained fundamental to overall health and for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

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