Contributed by Mar Jay S. Delas Alas, PIA-Bataan
BALANGA CITY, Bataan – Mental health programs and services are now being intensified in Bataan to further address the cases of mental illness and other mental health issues in the province.
During the recent Local Health Board meeting, local government officials and stakeholders discussed the status of the Mariveles Mental Hospital (MMH) in delivering mental health services to the public.
MMH Professional Education and Training Unit Head Dr. Rodelen Paccial said mental health services are not enough to support the needs of all patients due to its geography, human resources, and sparse mental health programs in the community.
“The problem is the lack of mental health services because we are in need of more psychiatrists and experts on mental health,” Paccial stressed.
“Another thing is that Mariveles is very far and it’s a hassle for families who want mental health advice to go there,” he furthered.
Paccial said the province needs to establish training programs on various mental health fields in the community.
He also proposed the establishment of Psychiatry Residency Program, Mental Health Assertive Community Treatment Teams and various trainings that will capacitate mental health practitioners.
“These programs are envisioned to accommodate government doctors from local government units to continue serving their communities,” he added.
For his part, Governor Albert Raymond Garcia expressed his full support in implementing the programs on mental health which is part of his vision to improve the life expectancy rate of Bataeños.
Garcia would like to train mental health workers in all 11 municipalities and the lone city in the province by the end of the year.
“Health is one of the rights of a person and these mental health programs will all be achieved through cooperation of all the local governments,” Garcia said.