The Lagos State Government, on Wednesday, said it was working to make the Majidun Rehabilitation Centre at Ikorodu a full functioning psychiatric hospital.
The state Commissioner for Health, Dr Olajide Idris, made the disclosure at the Annual General Meeting of the Association of Resident Doctors (ARD), Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Yaba, Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the theme of the AGM was: “Mental Health Promotion; Life Stressors and Mental Health; Coping Skills as a Tool for Safeguarding the Mind.”
Represented by the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Health, Dr Oreoluwa Finnih, Idris stressed the need for the state to have its own functional psychiatric hospital.
He said that establishing more psychiatric hospitals in country would help to improve the practice of psychiatric.
According to him, there exists an urgent need to adopt a Mental Health Policy for state, saying that government is working towards actualising it.
“Lack of functional regulations on mental health issues affects psychiatric practice in Nigeria, thereby depriving both the practitioners in the field and people with mental challenges of their rights.
“With the existence of mental health law and equipped psychiatric hospitals, all the modalities for treatment and management of the mentally-ill, including access to medical services, the modalities and resources of mental health will be made available,” he said.
Contributing, a Consultant Psychiatrist with Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Dr Olurotimi Coker, urged medical practitioners to develop skills for managing stress in order to avoid depression and burnout syndrome.
According to Coker, Nigerians, particularly medical practitioners, undergo a lot of stress, which can result in depression or even mental disorder, adding that they commit suicide more than other professionals.
“Studies show that 35 percent of doctors are experiencing depression and burnout syndrome and one to three physicians die by suicide everyday in the USA due to stress.
“To manage and cope with stress, medical practitioners must develop entrepreneurial mindset. They must set realistic goals as they plans to be financially independent before the age of 40.
“There is also the need to set limit to workloads, go on vacation and ensure one sleeps at least eight hours in a day. Life is not meant to be taken seriously. So enjoy your life while you can,” Coker said.
Earlier, the President of ARD, Dr Kabirat Kilanse-Oni, urged the state government to ensure provision of basic social amenities to enhance the living standards of residents as a way of easing stress on them.
Kilanse-Oni said that the traffic gridlock and bad roads in Lagos were the major causes of stress and depression among residents of the state.
According to her, the economic hardship in the country is another factor that has made many Nigerians to develop depression, saying that there is increase in the number of mental health cases in the country.
“If the government can provide the needed amenities, particularly the road network system, such that limited time will be spend on the road, the productivity and health condition of the residents will improve.
“And this will consequently enhance the economic development of the state and that of the country at large,” Kilanse-Oni said.