Govt commits to increase financing for mental healthcare

Written By: Hunja Macharia

The Government has vowed to recruit workforce and increase financing for mental healthcare to address challenges in the sector.

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This after a report by the Mental Health Policy and Taskforce found glaring gaps in the Country’s mental health systems.

Speaking during the launch of the Kenya Mental Health Action Plan 2021-2025, Health CAS Dr Mercy Mwangangi said the plan provides the framework for the Country’s mental health transformational journey over the next five years

“The National and County Governments shall be expected to dedicate resources towards establishment of user-friendly mental health infrastructure and amenities which will include

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ICT based services hardware at community and primary care level and ensure consistent supply of essential and high-quality medicine, equipment and technologies,” She said.

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She said mental health remains an integral pillar in the Country’s health system and social-economic development and emphasised on the Governments commitment to invest and implement activities towards uplifting the mental health and well-being of all Kenyans.

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“The Mental Health Action Plan (2021-2025) will provide a framework for both National and County Governments as well as stakeholders to implement the Mental Health Policy and Taskforce Recommendations through strategic actions with specified targets and indicators,” She said.

The plan seeks to achieve the following, strengthen effective leadership and governance in mental health, implement programmes meant to promote mental health, ensure access to comprehensive, integrated and high-quality mental health services at all levels and strengthen mental health systems.

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The CAS said the plan will also decentralize mental health services and programmes to primary health care at the community level. Its implementation will be guided by evidence-based interventions, inclusivity, equity, human rights, multisectoral and life course approaches.

“Promotion of mental health, stigma reduction and preventive programmes will focus on families and communities at all cross-sectoral levels. Some of the activities will include enhancing mental health literacy, addressing the determinants of mental health and reduction of risk factors,” She said.

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