Need for Integrated health service

Dibya Raj Poudel

Earthquake-affected populations in Rasuwa, Nuwakot, and Makwanpur have elevated symptoms of depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, suicidal ideation and alcohol use problems. The effects are seen relatively higher among women, individuals who were widowed, separated or divorced from their partners.  

This was claimed in Kathmandu during a public launch programme of a research report - 'Hidden Aftershocks'.   The assessment report is about psychosocial status and needs of earthquake-affected community. The assessment was carried out in those three districts 18 months after the April 2015 earthquake.

The study was conducted by Transcultural Psychosocial Organization Nepal for the American Red Cross, in collaboration with the Nepal Red Cross Society and with input from the Spanish Red Cross.

The publication has explored the psychosocial and mental health needs of those affected by the 2015 Nepal earthquakes in Rasuwa, Nuwakot and Makwanpur districts and has tried to inform about community-based mental health and psychosocial support interventions.

The report said mental health services to earthquake affected inhabitants reporting psychosocial and mental health symptoms is inadequate.

"Integration of mental health services into the existing health care system could be an effective and sustainable approach to provide mental health services to populations reporting psychosocial and mental health symptoms," the publication said.   

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