By ROGERS KALERO
CASES of Mental Health must not be taken to witch-doctors, but should be taken to health facilities which are better positioned to prescribe treatment for patients,” the Ministry of Health has said.
Copperbelt Provincial Health Director Charles Sakulanda said health facilities were ideal and best places to deal with Mental Health issues in various communities as opposed to witch-doctors.
Dr Sakulanda was speaking at the weekend during the In-But Free (IBF) sensitisation meeting for mental health issues which was held at Kamfinsa Correctional Facility in Kitwe ahead of
the commemoration of World Mental Health Day.
Dr Sakulanda said health facilities were ideal and best places to deal with Mental Health issues in various communities as opposed to witch-doctors because they can use medicines, counselling, group therapy and others means to deal with mental issues.
“Like I said earlier, Health Facilities are the best places to deal with mental health issues and so patients should not be taken to witch-doctors. I am saying this because Health Facilities can use medicines, counselling, group therapy and others means to deal with mental issues,” Dr Sakulanda said.
Dr Sakulanda advised In-mates to desist from stigmatising fellow Inmates with Mental Health issues, but treat them the way they treat every human being.
He also said substance abuse was among some of the major causes of Mental Health problems hence it was important that there was serious advocacy against substance abuse.
“Substance abuse like beer and other intoxicating substances cause mental a lot of mental problems. There is need to continue advocacy against substance abuse,’ he said.
IBF Programmes Manager Precious Hazemba said her organisation with other stakeholders have continued to work with other stakeholders in improving the welfare of the In-mates in various correctional facilities.
Ms Hazemba said her organisation was happy with the cooperation it was receiving from government departments and ministries in trying to improve the welfare of In-mates.