Story: Kwabena AKYEANA
A medical doctor at the Accra Psychiatric Hospital, Dr Victor Ogoe has revealed that people are not patronising the facility because of the purpose for which it was built as an asylum.
Dr. Ogoe explained that people avoid coming to the facility because it was built to serve as an asylum before being converted into a psychiatric hospital.
“For Accra Psychiatric Hospital the infrastructure is just not okay for Psychiatric health; just imagine seeking help from a place that was built to serve as an asylum”, he stated
According to him, all psychiatric health facilities in the country need a facelift to serve their purpose. He said this will help de stigmatise mental health and enable people to feel comfortable visiting such facilities.
Speaking on mental health and its related issues , he said, people also feel reluctant to visit the facility because of the stigma associated with being seen in a Psychiatric Hospital.
He urged Ghanaians to treat people who have mental health challenges with dignity because the condition can happen to anyone.
“We need to normalise psycho-social conditions to drive people to seek help for psychological issues”, he added.
As a way of normalising mental health, the Accra Psychiatric hospital has launched a free call-in mental screening and counseling programme where people can call to speak to a doctor, nurse, or psychologist on all mental health issues, at no cost.
He reiterated that it’s time for people to patronise the social help being offered Corporate Social Responsibility, devoid of the stigma.