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Mental Health on PIHO Agenda

Every year, on October 10, which marks World Mental Health Day, the World Health Organization (WHO) announces a theme corresponding to current affairs. This year, the theme chosen for World Mental Health Day 2018 was "Young People and Mental Health in a Changing World".
For its part, the Petroleum Industry Health Organization (PIHO) holds various programs on this occasion in order to underline the significance of mental health, repair the prestige and standing of mentally ill patients, promote the curability of psychological diseases and underscore the significance of prevention in such patients. 
Ezzat Mirabzadeh, head of neurology at PIHO sub-specialized hospital, said mental health was a pillar of public health.
He said that correct methods were required to be applied so that mentally ill patients could adapt themselves to their environment and find a suitable solution to their problems. 
"Based on global statistics, 25% of people in the world are suffering from a mental disorder. That is while addiction to drug and also drug and alcohol abuse have not been taken into account in providing this data. Furthermore, 28% of disabilities and failures like failure to study and work result from psychological diseases. Therefore, mental disorders impose a heavy burn upon the families and the society," said Mirabzadeh. 
Referring to the theme "Young People and Mental Health in a Changing World", he said: "Youth coincides with the end of high school and just before entering the labor market or university. Such time is very emotional and sometimes stressful for many young people. If no correct management is done that may result in mental disorders."
"Like every other disease, there are three levels for mental health. The first-level prevention consists of all measures that would help prevent mental disorders. The main objective of this level is to strengthen people in the society through controlling inheritance, environmental and family abnormalities. The second-level prevention is the stage where the objective is to prevent mental disorders' complications by timely diagnosis and suitable treatment, and in the third-level prevention, the objective is to prevent the complications of chronic disorders and individual, familial and social disabilities," he added.   
Noting the services at the three levels are offered at hospitals. 
"The main concentration is on the second level prevention in light of facilities available for the treatment of diseases. This level also receives the largest number of clients. The most important measures that may be done to prevent mental diseases is to offer education to people that those who have a family history of the disease were exposed to the disease," said Mirabzadeh.
"Offering advice about genetics, pregnancy and symptoms before starting prevention are among other measures undertaken at the neurology ward of PIHO hospital," he said.
Mirabzadeh referred to the presence of five psychiatrists at the hospital and two psychiatrists at the clinic, saying: "The positive measure by the Tehran Directorate of PIHI to transfer the neurology department to the central hospital over recent years has been instrumental in fixing the prestige of mentally ill patients." 
Mental Health, Prevention Prioritized 
Meysam Saeedian, secretary of PIHO Mental Health Committee, highlighted the WHO definition of health, saying: "In its constitution, the WHO has defined health as full physical, mental and social wellbeing and not merely lack of disease. Therefore, PIHO, which administers health affairs of petroleum industry staff, has realized the sensitivity of this issue and prioritized their health both physically and mentally in light of hardships to which oil service workers are exposed and the conditions of their families."
"Fortunately, PIHO has a long background in offering medical services in the mental and social health sectors. It has managed to take effective steps to accomplish its missions within the framework of its vision," he said. 
"Healthcare services in PIHO are chain-wise and mental health services which are provided by psychiatrists and psychologists are a link in this chain," he said.
Saeedian said 35 mental health counseling centers and clinics are providing preventive services in mental health sector in all areas covered by PIHO based on PIHO's vision and strategic plan. 
"In recent years, people's awareness about mental health has increased, but it's not enough. There must be a space for people to reach the perception that they need to refer to psychiatrist and psychologist for their mental health and upon WHO recommendation mental health clinics are needed to be established alongside other clinics," he said. 
Saeedian also touched on World Health Day, named by the World Federation of Mental Health (WFMH), saying the main objective behind marking such an occasion was to upgrade and enhance public awareness and modify people's perception of mental health issues.
He expressed hope that Mental Health Week in Iran would provide an opportunity to know social aspects of mental health.
Nov 24, 2018 11:15
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