To address psychiatric disorder problems in the community, 16 doctors, nurses and health workers underwent a seminar on “Understanding Psychiatric Disorder in the Community” today, March 18 in Barangay Rio Tuba, Bataraza, Palawan.
Mary Daryl Joyce Lindo-Calleja, one of around 600 general adult psychiatrists and 60 child psychiatrists in the country, served as resource speaker to the said event.
“I am very happy that a community like Rio Tuba initiated this kind of activity since mental health is one of the neglected aspects in the country today,” Dr. Calleja said to the participants before the start of her lecture.
She underscored the importance of knowing how to handle patients until such time that an expert can attend to the needs of a particular patient.
Introduction to Common Psychiatric Disorder, Basic Psychiatric Assessment for Patients in the Community, Management of Psychiatric Disorders and Violence, and Suicide Risk Assessment were some of the topics tackled.
Dr. Calleja also emphasized that it will be easier for patients to recover from mental illness with the help of family members and the community, rather than putting them in a mental hospital.
According to Laurence Amores, Coral Bay Nickel Corporation’s General Supervisor, the issue initially caught the company’s attention due to safety concerns. According to him, patients wandering the street pose danger to motorists. But eventually, they saw the need of helping the community to address the problem.
“Since wala namang mental facility sa Palawan, at mas mahal naman kung dadalhin mga pasyente sa Manila, we came up with teaching medical practitioners on how to handle such cases,” Amores explained.
Presently, there are 74 recorded cases of “mental illness” in Bataraza town.