Finding cure for anxiety, depression will now be more affordable — Palace
Malacañang on Thursday said the passage of the Mental Health Law would make treatments for anxiety, depression and other mental health issues more affordable.
“We consider the signing of Republic Act No. 11036, otherwise known as the “Mental Health Act,” as a testament of the President’s commitment to provide accessible and affordable mental health care and services to all Filipinos,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement.
Roque said the newly-signed law “forms part of the government’s mandate to design and implement a national mental health program and integrate this as part of the health information system.”
Roque, who co-authored the bill when he was still in Congress, recognized mental disorders “as illness which can be diagnosed and treated.”
The bill was principally authored by Senate by Senate President Vicente Sotto III, and co-authored by Senators Loren Legarda, Sonny Trillanes, Bam Aquino, Sonny Angara, and Joel Villanueva.
“We hope this policy will help neutralize the stigma attached to mental illness,” Roque said.
Implementing a universal mental healthcare system in the country, he said, “would provide more awareness regarding mental health among Filipinos, especially given the rising number of suicide cases among the youth.”
The new law will provide mental health services down to the barangay level. Psychiatric, psychosocial, and neurologic services will also be made available in regional, provincial, and tertiary hospitals.
The law will also mandate the improvement of mental health care facilities and promote mental health education in schools and workplaces.
Seven Filipinos commit suicide daily
In a statement on Thursday, Senator Risa Hontiveros said, “Every day, seven Filipinos turn to suicide. One in five Filipino adults also suffers from a form of mental disorder.”
“The Mental Health Law cements the government’s commitment to a more holistic approach to healthcare: without sound mental health there can be no genuine physical health,” she said. /vvp
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