Take care of mental health, avoid stigma

KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysians must work together to empower self with mental health care and address the stigma against mental illness, said Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

He said everyone’s mental health could be affected in various ways, especially when the country was fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Hence, he said it was crucial for society to have the knowledge to identify early symptoms of mental illness and depression so that assistance could be provided via the Health Ministry’s ‘Let’s TALK Minda Sihat’ programme.

“Start with talking to someone you trust, which is T- Tell someone you trust about your problem; A- Ask for help; L- Listen without judgement and K- Know where to seek help.

“Don’t stigmatise this illness. Instead, we have to help the people we love and the people around us to seek assistance for the problems,” he said in conjunction with the World Mental Health Day celebration which falls on Oct 10 every year.

Dr Noor Hisham was speaking at a virtual press conference streamed via the Health Ministry Facebook page today.

He added that the ministry also provided the Mental Health and Psychosocial Support service and psychosocial support line to assist society including frontliners who need early intervention.

Besides that, he said the ministry would continue to cooperate with other agencies such as MERCY Malaysia, JAKIM’s KSK Care Centre, Talian Kasih and other non-governmental organisations in ensuring a coordinated psychosocial support service.

— BERNAMA