One in 4 Kenyans diagnosed with mental health disorders, says CAS Aman
One in every four Kenyans is diagnosed with mental illness in their lifetime, the Ministry of Health has said.
Health Chief Administrative Secretary Dr. Rashid Aman said at least 40 per cent of those diagnosed are admitted in in-patient facilities.
According to the Director of Mental Health in the ministry, Dr. Simon Njuguna, challenges facing mental health include lack of research, stigma, limited access to quality care, besides weak leadership and governance.
On his part, World Health Organization (WHO) Country Representative Dr. Rudi Eggers cited mental health as the second leading cause of death among youth and young adults.
He rallied for support from the government, calling for investment in mental health saying Kenya is among 28 countries without a proper mental health budget.
“While COVID-19 is a health crisis it can be a major mental health crisis if action is not taken. Reducing the effects of mental health requires a multi-sectoral effort,” UNDP Country Deputy Resident representative, Mandisa Mashologu. added.
At the same time, cases of child mistreatment and substance abuse among school-going children are on the rise.
Ministry of Education Director General Elyas Abdi said the challenges have skyrocketed during the pandemic, an indicator of the mental strain compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The officials were speaking at the multi-sectoral forum on Kenya mental health held on Monday.
For Citizen TV updates
Join @citizentvke Telegram channel
Video Of The Day: CAS Rachel Shebesh and athlete Asbel Kiprop share their mental health journeys