Parish Psychiatrist for Kingston and St Andrew, Dr Craig Radlein says health professionals and other personnel are being equipped, to provide the necessary support to people suffering from depression and anxiety.

He noted that both conditions are prevalent in Jamaica, adding that people should become more sensitised to it.

“It is very serious, it is debilitating, it robs persons of their productive capacity and it robs society of its potential to earn and develop,” he said.

Dr Radlein stated that the Ministry of Health and Wellness does provide training, to ensure that people can recognise the characteristics of the conditions.

“We train persons outside of mental health, not just the doctors, but nurses and health care providers as well, to try and diagnose and identify these conditions so that the intervention can take place without delay,” he explained.

Radlein added that he is looking forward to the guidance that will be provided to human resource (HR) practitioners, by the workplace mental health policies that are currently being developed in the ministry.

“Many persons in the workplace are suffering in silence and are afraid to come out to get help. They know that this thing is robbing them of their productivity and many HR professionals are not aware of how to provide a safe space for such persons to get help within the organization without ostracising or victimising them. So they too need the guidance from [the] healthy workplace policy, which I know is being worked on at the ministry,” he stated.

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