The member of parliament for Oforikrom Constituency of the Ashanti region, Emmanuel Marfo has called for Mental Health Act, Act 846 of 2012, to be fused back into the national development agenda,
He brought a statement
before parliament titled “Bring back mental health care to National Development Agenda”.
In his statement, he indicated the increase in mental illness and said there are more cases out there than what is known and recorded which are mostly reported in the news.
Hon. Marfo further diclosed that, there was a case of a student in the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology reported dead by hanging herself in her room. Also, in the University of Ghana, there was a report of a student who died from jumping off the fourth floor of her Hall of residence.
He also sited as one of the cases, the attempt on Ex president John Dramani Mahama’s life during his worship in a church where Charles Antwi went with a gun ostensibly to shoot him which was later revealed that him (Charles Antwi) was mentally ill.
Hon. Marfo enlightened parliament in his statement, the causes of mental illness.
He said it includes depression, difficulties, harsh economy, high use of Drugs and many more.
The honourable minister noted that if care is not taken, mental illness will bring consequences, that will have implications on individual lives, and the economy.
He made five recommendations that calls for urgent attention.
1. Establish a high-level inter-ministerial task force to see the full implementation of Mental Heatlh Act,
Act 846 of 2012.
2. Institute sanctions for non-professional centres providing services for the treatment of mental illness.
3. Increase of budgetary allocation and spending on mental health.
4. Institute a system of periodic mental health check-ups, especially among the working force.
5. Provide resources and support to civil society organizations to embark on aggressive nation-wide awareness creation, particularly in schools, market places, churches and mosques about the causes, dangers and treament of mental illness.
Minority leader, Hon. Haurna Iddrisu commended the honourable member for drawing their attention to the Health Care Act and also advised the minister of health to activate a provision list to help in better health.
By: Felicia Afunyabea/ YooYooAfrica media.