MD Advocates for Provision of Accessible Mental Health Services 

Onuminya Innocent in Sokoto 

 A Medical Director of Federal Neuro Psychiatric Hospital (FNPH) Kware, Sokoto State Prof. Shehu Sale, on a recent Thursday, called on governments and stakeholders’ in the health sector to fast track provision of accessible, quality and affordable mental health services in the country.

Sale made the call at a public lecture in commemoration of 2023 World Mental Health Day (WMHD) organised by the hospital.

He described the 2023 WMHD theme ” Mental Health is a Universal Human Right ” as apt and timely, urging Nigerians to ensure that human rights of persons with mental health conditions are not violated.

He explained that mental health is an integral part of people’s overall health and wellbeing, which needed to be protected at all times.

The Psychiatrist decried that many people with mental health conditions are being violated and deprived of their rights in the society because of their health condition.

He further explained that with increased cases of substance abuse, drug dependency rates and associated disorders, Federal Government constructed Women and Children Drug Dependent Treatment Center in the hospital.

Sale, who is a Master trainer for United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC) and International Certified Addiction Professional, said the center is first of it kind to cater for patients in northern parts of the country.

The Medical Director added that women involvement in substance abuse and related disorders also affected their children including infants and needed experts remedies which necessitated the introduction of the treatment centers.

According to him, the hospital at present provided integrated healthcare services to the people besides psychiatric care which will reduce stigma being associated with mental health treatment.

” Treatment of all forms of illnesses, medical tests, and other services are being provided at all times in the hospital.

“ The hospital has world-class equipment such as mobile digital x-ray machine, mobile ultrasound machine, ultrasonography machine, digitalized medical and diagnostic records system, occupational therapy equipment and modern laboratory tools, he stated.

He said Federal Government has constructed and equip an intensive care unit, a molecular laboratory, an isolation center, and other needed facilities in the hospital.

He noted that total bed space and staff strength have been increased including experts in different fields, while the restoration of full accreditation status to the Post-Basic Psychiatric Nursing School at the hospital had been ensured.

In his presentation on a topic ” Reducing Mental Health Risks through Drug Abuse Awareness and Prevention ” Dr Shamsudeen Shehu, led participants on standard prevention and treatment modalities.

Dr Umar presented available remedies of mental health disorders, substance abuse, rehabilitation and reintegration techniques to be provided in a health facility. 

He dwelled on the chain of services for psychiatric patients care, different abnormalities and level of medical attention to be provided from Primary Healthcare centers to tertiary health institutions. 

Earlier, the FNPH’s Head of Clinical Service, Dr Adebisi Adebayo, said the hospital organized chain of activities to mark the WMHD starting from road walk, lecture series to educate citizens on mental health.

Adebayo said mental health as a universal human right implied that every human being has right to accessible and quality mental healthcare services.

He noted that WMHD is celebrated annually on Oct. 10 to raise awareness about mental health around the world and also  to mobilize efforts to support those experiencing mental health issues.

The event was attended by traditional rulers, students from secondary schools, tertiary health institutions and the general public.

It also witnessed questions and answers on divers mental health issues and access to medication and other supports through interactive session led by another Facilitator, Dr Hamza Gado. 

Related Articles