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Attitudes to mental health change

Saturday April 09, 2016 Written by Published in Health
Dr Tekaai Nelesoni, Dr Rangi Fariu, New Zealand clinical psychologist Dr Epenesa Olo-Whannga, consultant psychiatrist Dr Francis Angew and Dr Anna Paniani at Community Health Services in Apa Tupapa earlier this week. 16040614 Dr Tekaai Nelesoni, Dr Rangi Fariu, New Zealand clinical psychologist Dr Epenesa Olo-Whannga, consultant psychiatrist Dr Francis Angew and Dr Anna Paniani at Community Health Services in Apa Tupapa earlier this week. 16040614

Psychiat ric Services staff at the Community Health Services in Upper Tupapa are receiving positive responses from the public about gradual changes in the way people in the Cook Islnds regard mental health problems.

 

This comes after visiting doctors from New Zealand Dr Francis Angew, a consultant psychiatrist and clinical psychologist Dr Epenesa Olo-Whaanga began clinics at the hospital this week.

“Today we are fully booked and we have been receiving a lot of patients ever since we arrived,” Dr Angew said on Wednesday.

“We’ve seen a whole range of people so far. Some cases we came across are mild to moderate but depression and anxiety seem prevalent.”

According to the Mental Health team, depression and anxiety are being taken more seriously by women than men on Rarotonga

“Mental health is our final frontier seems to have advanced over time, Dr Angew said.

“Mental health or mental illness is treatable and the big message is that things can change.

“People need to know that there is help, and with the modern medicine we now have, it can be treated.

“We are here for only two weeks so we’ll spend the first week here and then go to Aitutaki for two to three days then come back here and finish off the clinic.

“We may also spend a day visiting Arorangi Prison.”