Health News of 2014-01-20

More psychiatry doctors needed - Dr Ofori-Atta

A Senior Lecturer at the University of Ghana Medical School, Dr Angela Ofori- Atta, has urged medical students to consider specialising in psychiatry to have a better appreciation of caring for mentally challenged persons.

She said most students did not have interest in the field of psychiatry and psychology because of the myth surrounding mentally challenged persons.

Dr Ofori- Atta, who is also a clinical psychologist, was speaking at a conference organised by the Department of Psychiatry of the University of Ghana Medical School for final year students.

The conference, which formed part of the students’ research work, discussed four research works on topics related to mental health.

Dr Ofori- Atta added that the alarming rate of mental illness called for more specialists and health professionals to be trained in the field of psychiatry and psychology to address the issues.

Studies, she said, had shown that as of 2011, there were 19 psychiatrists and 17 psychologists in Ghana, which was not enough to cater for the mental health needs of Ghanaians.

KBTH to establish psychiatric facility

In his remarks, the Head of Psychiatry of the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, Dr Samuel Ohene, said the management of the hospital had decided to establish a psychiatric facility to cater for the health needs of mentally challenged persons

He said the management acknowledged the fact that mental health issues, like other health conditions, needed to be given the necessary attention.

The hospital has a department for academic work but it does not have a psychiatric facility to manage, treat and care for patients with mental illness, hence the need for the facility.

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