provincial government to pass a Mental Health Act

PESHAWAR: This was said by the speakers who were gathered at Khyber Teaching Hospital to observe The World Mental Health Day, organized by Department of Psychiatry Khyber Teaching Hospital, Peshawar Speakers at a seminar demanded the provincial government to pass a Mental Health Act from the Provincial Assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to provide the best healthcare facilities to patients with mental disorders.
He further said that if we project the commonness of other common disorders like dementia, major mental illnesses like schizophrenia, mania, and disorders of babyhood, it comes out to be 50 per cent, adding that seven million people in Pakistan suffer from substance abuse disorder. .On the occasion Professor Syed Mohammad Sultan In Charge of the Psychiatry Department KTH and the President Pakistan Psychiatric Society, said that in Pakistan around 34 per cent of people were coping with anxiety and depression
He informed that the Royal College of Psychiatrists London recommends one psychiatrist for every 10 thousand population, while in Pakistan we have only 400 psychiatrists for a population of 200 million
.Professor Sultan additional further that after the Army Public School assault in Peshawar the provincial government had announced that in all public hospitals a special psychoanalysis ward would be established where patients across the province will get treatment.
He further added that the government had established a psychiatry unit at Lady ReadingHospital Peshawar, but after the passage of time that unit was not functional, adding that there was a dire need of psychiatry units in every public hospital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
He said that the Sindh government had passed the Mental Health Act but the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly till date had not passed the bill, adding that when the bill was passed from the provincial assembly there would be more seats sanction for physiologists in hospitals as in well budget allocation.
He further informed that children were suffering more from psychiatric disorders in the countryand there was only one centre in Pakistan working for child psychiatry patients, adding that there were no centres available in KP where treatments of child psychiatry were available.
He stated that they were in negotiation with the Khyber Teaching Hospital Medical Directorsto establishe a child psychiatry department in KTH as soon as possible, adding that psychiatric disorders were increasing in the elderly population of the province day by day and soon a psychiatric ward for elderly patients would also be established as the project had been sent to the provincial government for approval.
Prof. Sultan added and emphasised the shortage of resources for health in general and for mental health in particular. The mental health budget is very meagre, almost non-existent. He demanded that the federal govt. and the provincial govt. should double the health budget and the proportion of mental health budget should be increased four times at least, to provide some decent services to the people.
Professor Dr. Bashir said that because of militancy and terrorism in Pakistan and particularly in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa mental health problems increasing day by day in elders as well as in children. He further added that because of the mental illness and other disorders women and children were the most vulnerable persons to the disease, adding that because of the disease the abortion ratio in the country was increasing among women.
On the occasion faculty members of the hospital also spoke on the occasion and highlighted the importance of the Mental Health Day observed across the globe on October 10.

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