Medical frontliners told to seek help for mental health issues

There is no doubt anymore that the Covid-19 pandemic has had a great impact on every one’s lives, particularly education, livelihood, employment and job security, and other implications. 카지노사이트

More important to note, however, is that challenges to mental health have significantly increased over the past one and a half years that the pandemic is ongoing, with 3.6 million Filipinos suffering from poor mental health

During the “Mental Health Matters” webinar organized by the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF), the webinar’s panelists were asked about mental health issues confronting medical frontliners. One issue is that many expressed continued fear and stress from the situation, specifically in contracting the virus which they may bring home to their families. The physical and emotional fatigue because of work and other concerns are taking its toll.

Mariflor “Yeng” Gatchalian from the University of Perpetual Health DALTA, said that mental health issues are present. There is a need to be aware of it so that it can be managed. However, feelings of distress and sadness are perfectly normal. She added that everything that’s happening are all new. Even in the hospitals where patients’ queue has already reached the parking lot, this is something new to the frontliners no matter how long they’ve worked in hospitals.

Fear of infection

Before, they can go home after their duty and bond with their families; that is not the situation anymore since there is the fear of infecting their family members with the virus. “The mixed emotions really give us negative feelings because we are still trying to get accustomed to it. This is normal, but we have to know the parameters.”

Riyan Portuguez from the Wellbridge Health, Inc., acknowledges that everything the medical frontliners are undergoing are genuine and difficult, and that they are feeling tired already. She also echoed what Gatchalian said, that “we need to be aware of what our bodies feel to be able to determine when we should seek professional help with what we feel.”

She said some people like the medical frontliners also feel they are being neglected by the government and are getting tired of this setup. The response of the government has an effect on their work. While they try to follow policies, they strongly feel that the government is lacking in the way they treat them

Proper management

Pierce Docena, a registered psychometrician from the University of the Philippines—Visayas (Tacloban College), likewise agreed that there might be something lacking not only on the side of the government but also in the local government or even the hospital administration level. “It is important that there is proper management within the organization, and that contributes to everyone’s mental health. This is something they should think about as well.” 바카라사이트

As to the when frontliners should seek professional help, it is an issue of “react,” which is doing something without thinking, and “respond,” which is we think first before we respond, according to Gatchalian. She said that when we feel too toxic or burned out, the thinking part is already gone. “When this is already an impairment in our regular, daily functions like sleeping, loss of concentration or sleep, experience of distressful thoughts, and if all these are ongoing for quite some time already, then it may be the time to seek professional help to help us manage whatever we are experiencing for it not to progress to a psychological disorder.”

For persons with disabilities, specifically women like Melagros Maguiling, president of the Differently-Abled Women Network (DAWN), disabled women volunteers, just like the medical frontliners, also experience stressful situations due to the pandemic like how long it will last, will they be able to do work, bills to pay, also government support. “Women with disabilities somewhat experience the same things as medical frontliners, the anxiety, stress, burnout, and they also need all the support they can get.”

Community-based approach

On the part of government, Dr. Beverly Ho, Director IV, Health Promotion and Communication Service, of the Department of Health (DOH), said that during and even before the pandemic, the department’s goal has been to democratize mental health services and promotion. “This means everyone has a role to play in improving the environment for all of us so that our behavior on how we react to situations will be more supportive and enabling.” 온라인카지

She said that before, when people talk about health behavior, including mental health, it’s often very individual-based. Clearly, she said, the framework has to change, and as much as individual behavior is important, the enabling environment has significantly become more important as well. She said the DOH, among its initiatives on mental health, has adopted a community-based approach, that mental health services are accessible on the frontlines through the regular health workers and even lay volunteers and not just by specialists.

Rene Meily, president of the PDRF, said mental health has been one of the major problems in this medical emergency, still with no end in sight, specifically for the medical frontliners who constantly face danger, despair and distress. “For them, going to work every day is an act of courage for they are at the eye of the Covid-19 storm. What we can do to help is to continue to support them on how they can cope. Let us join this battle and remember that we are all in this together.” 

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