No home to go back to but majority of patients at National ‘Psych’ hospital can leave


More than half of the 200 patients receiving treatment at Guyana’s National Psychiatric hospital in New Amsterdam, Berbice, can be discharged and receive treatment from their communities.

However, Health Minister Dr. Frank Anthony Tuesday said many of these patients have no home or support system to go back to.

As such, local authorities are forced to keep them in the hospital.

“Many of those patients that we have at the institution have been there for many years and while in some instances, we assessed them and feel they can go home, our biggest challenge is that there is no home to go back to.

“Out of necessity, we have to care for some of those patients now,” Dr. Anthony told the News Room on the sidelines of a World Mental Health day activity on Tuesday.

Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony

As reported previously, many of the patients in this facility are older folks in need of care, who have been abandoned by their families.

But Dr. Anthony said that healthcare has evolved in ways that allows people to receive treatment from their communities. A support system is, however, crucial.

With a revitalised focus on improving mental healthcare in Guyana and eradicating the stigma attached to mental illness, the Health Minister said the government is seeking to build halfway homes in communities for those patients who can be discharged.

Those homes, he said, would provide some amount of stability for people transitioning out of the psychiatric hospital.

“It’s a discussion that we’re having,” he said.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.