By Fareeza Haniff
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Alliance For Change (AFC) Member and Parliamentarian, Cathy Hughes believes that the issue of mental health needs to be placed high on the agenda in Guyana.
She told a news conference on Friday, September 26, that there is no proper facility in the country which provides full time treatment for mental health patients.
“On a day to day basis we see people that appear to be suffering from mental health issues on our streets. We’ve had situations of a violent nature where individuals have been attacked and in one case I know about three years ago and individual lost their life in Albouystown,” Hughes said.
She explained that just a week ago, the AFC established a relationship with a new women’s shelter where the Party donated equipment.
“They have a psychologist on staff on a full time basis that is doing evaluations and providing counseling,” Hughes said.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) in its first global report on suicide prevention revealed that Guyana is the country with the highest estimated suicide rate for 2012 globally with Suriname ranking as the sixth highest.
According to the report, “Suicide rates in this Region show a first peak among the young, remain at the same level for other age groups and rise again in elderly men. In high-income countries, hanging accounts for 50% of suicides, and firearms are the second most common method, accounting for 18% of suicides.”
The WHO further noted that the relatively high proportion of suicides by firearms in high-income countries is primarily driven by high-income countries in the Americas where firearms account for 46% of all suicides; in other high-income countries firearms account for only 4.5% of all suicides.