Guyana: The Ministry of Health’s Adolescent Health Unit, in collaboration with the Pan American Health Organisation/World Health Organisation (PAHO), UNICEF and Desert Flower Guyana, on October 10, hosted the launch of World Mental Health Awareness Day 2022 Activities and the Do Your Share Campaign.
The overall objective of the commemorative activities on Mental Health Day is to increase awareness related to the mental health issues and mobilise efforts to support the care of mental health. The Day provides an opportunity to discuss their work and highlight the efforts to make mental health care a reality for the public.
The Adolescent Health and Mental Health Units of Health Ministry and other key stakeholders are committed to hosting a month of activities under the theme, ‘Creating Hope through Action’. The vision behind this theme is to work towards the achievement of universal health coverage.
These activities will increase suicide prevention and mental health awareness and reduction of the stigma related to mental health illnesses.
During his remarks, Minister of Health, Dr Frank Anthony, said that the ultimate goal is to reduce mental health cases in the country and provide the necessary support to ensure the health and well-being of all Guyanese.
The Minister explained that the MOH intends to make mental health programmes more community-oriented and provide patients with the necessary care and treatment.
“We will train our doctors to provide basic psychiatric care at the community level and provide ongoing training for other health care workers within health centres”, Minister Anthony said.
With a focus on the efforts to eliminate the stigma surrounding mental health conditions, the PAHO/WHO Representative to Guyana, Dr Luis Codina, said that Guyana had undertaken a new approach through the development of the new mental health laws which focuses on the aspects of human rights, social protection and health promotion. Meanwhile, Nicolas Pron, UNICEF Representative to Guyana and Suriname, said that his Organisation recognises mental health as a global priority and will continue to work with its partners to ensure the rights and well-being of all children across Guyana.
Also present at today’s event were the Director of Primary Health Care Services – Dr Ertensia Hamilton; Cilandell Glenn, Adolescent Health Coordinator; Dr Timothy Morgan, attached to the Mental Health Unit, Abigail Fraser, Representative of Desert Flower Guyana and Andrea King, Miss World Guyana.