Mental patients deserve love, compassion – Dr M’membe
By Staff Reporter
SOCIALIST Party 2021 presidential candidate Dr. Fred M’membe says mental patients deserve love, compassion and care from society.
Speaking when he toured the Chainama Mental Hospital this morning, Dr M’membe called for the improvement of facilities at mental health facilities.
“We need to put more resources, more attention and give these people our love, our care and our compassion because these are our brothers and sisters ,” said Dr M’membe.
Dr M’membe observed that some of the buildings at the hospital were old and called for concerted efforts to modernise them to meet rising demand for mental care facilities.
“We have just completed our visit to Chainama Mental Hospital. We have decided to take this visit to our brothers and sisters who are mentally ill and admitted here at Chainama mental hospital to attract the attention that is needed to the issue of mental illness. Mental illness is something that is not treated with compassion in this country,” he said.
“Care for our mentally ill brothers and sisters is not at the level it should be at, most of them are abandoned, forgotten. As society we have not done well in terms of caring for mentally ill, we pay more attention to other illnesses but not mental illness. Mentally ill patients are not treated in a way they should”.
Dr M’membe said the tour of the hospital facilities had revealed a lot of things about lack of humanity in society, and yet anyone could find themselves in a similar situation.
He said society was not paying enough attention to mental illness, yet the number of patients was increasing by the day, due to many social problems such as HIV, alcohol , drugs, economic and social hardships and general biological factors.
“The facilities that are at Chainama mental hospital were the facilities that the Catholic Church left us. We have not done much to increase the capacity, to improve the facilities, to modernise them and there is a lot of work which need to be done,” said Dr M’membe.
“People working there are doing their best but under very difficult conditions. We hope with this visit our attention could be drown to the problem of mental illness in our country, to the patients, to the care givers and to the facilities.
“ We know we have a bad history in terms of looking after mentally ill patients – traditionally even the language we use on them such as chalipena, nichofunta, kisipulumuki and so on. It’s not acceptable, we can do better, these are our brothers and sisters, let’s give them love and attention they deserve ”.