View Full Version : Ghana Is Sitting On A Time Bomb – Chief Psychiatrist

9th August 2011, 04:14 PM
The Chief Psychiatrist at the Ghana Health Service has disclosed that Ghana is sitting on a time bomb which would explode with disastrous consequences if the passage of the Mental Health Bill is delayed any further.

According to Dr. Akwasi Osei, there is urgent need to pass the Bill on time to enable government establish more mental hospitals across the country, which will in turn reduce the nurse-to-patient ratio.

The Chief Psychiatrist noted that the three mental hospitals in the country namely, the Accra, Pantang and Ankaful Psychiatric hospitals have been overstretched beyond their limit and there is the need for more establishments to meet the growing number of people suffering from mental disorders.

Dr. Akwasi Osei was speaking to Frimpong Manso Adakabre on Dwaso Nsem on Adom FM Monday in reaction to newspaper reports that he will lead mental patients to Parliament if the Mental Health Bill is not passed by October this year.

He noted that mental patients need proper care which is currently not happening because of the large number of patients and the few nurses available adding that if something is not done, a time will come when mentally unstable patients will outnumber their staff, overpower them, hit the streets and cause havoc.

Currently, there are over 2,000 mental patients with less than 600 nurses taking care of them.

He lamented that mental patients have been marginalised for far too long and warned that if care is not taken, the country will have a tough time salvaging the situation.

However, Minister of Health, Joseph Yieleh Chireh in a response dismissed the Chief Psychiatrist’s claims that the Mental Health Bill is being delayed.

He stated that although currently there are nine Bills from the Health Ministry before Parliament for consideration, because of the importance attached to the passage of the Bill, members of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Health have been sent abroad to study the Mental Law to enhance the current Bill.

He expressed the hope that the bill will be passed in the shortest possible time.

Source: Adom News