Drug dependence a mental health problem, says Bongbong Marcos
MANILA, Philippines — President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.’s administration believes that drug dependence is a mental health issue.
This is a far cry from his predecessor, former President Rodrigo Duterte’s outlook on drugs, whose bloody war on drugs reportedly left thousands of drug suspects dead.
In a speech by Marcos that was delivered by Health Undersecretary Abdullah Dumama Jr. in Agusan del Sur, the President said, “This government believes that drug dependence is a serious mental health condition. If left untreated, it becomes a growing social problem and a significant public health issue. Conversely, the lack of access to treatment for substance abuse results in chronic illnesses and other adverse social effects on the community.”
Dumama was in the province to celebrate the Department of Health-Drug Abuse Treatment and Rehabilitation Center’s fourth anniversary.
The President said that such rehabilitation centers remain a sanctuary for those looking for healing.
In his speech, Marcos also emphasized the need for a holistic approach to crack down on the use of illegal drugs.
“We must take a whole-of-nation approach to seriously curb the proliferation of illegal drugs. This includes prevention, treatment, rehabilitation, and law enforcement to ensure that we implement the Philippine Anti-Illegal Drug Strategy and eradicate this health and social menace once and for all,” said Marcos.