A total of 223,990 calls to the Psychosocial Support Line were received as of Sept 19 with 80.8% of callers in need of emotional support and counselling, the Dewan Negara was told today.
Deputy Health Minister Dr Noor Azmi Ghazali said the issues included those related to job loss, no source of income, family conflicts and interpersonal relationship problems.
“Other issues included the stigma of being infected of Covid-19, isolation and lack of access to aid and assistance during the movement control order (MCO),” he said during the question-and-answer session at the Dewan Negara.
Noor Azmi was replying to Wan Martina Wan Yusoff who wanted to know what the government was doing to address the mental health issues of the people during the pandemic.
He said the Psychosocial Support Help Line was one of the government’s initiatives to improve the existing mental health management system.
“Last October, we also appointed and deployed an additional 200 psychology officers on a contract basis to provide mental health services and psychosocial support at 1,191 health clinics nationwide.
“The ministry is also intensifying its promotional and mental health prevention programmes at the primer stage that includes screening, intervention and treatment to improve the early detection of individuals with mental health issues,” he said.