Rehab facilities in Guyana inadequate- Health Minister

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Substance abuse is a problem many grapple with but Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony believes that there are not enough treatment and rehabilitation facilities in Guyana to counter this.

Substance abuse, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), refers to the harmful or hazardous use of psychoactive substances, including alcohol and illicit drugs.

Because substance abuse negatively impacts one’s health, Dr. Anthony said his Ministry intends to expand the services it provides to people affected.

The new Mental Health Protection and Promotion law empowers local health authorities to craft measures to address substance abuse, though specific measures are not detailed.

Health Minister Dr. Frank Anthony (Photo: News Room/December 23, 2022)

The Health Minister, however, said that the local health authorities want to expand rehabilitation services.

“We don’t have adequate rehab facilities, we don’t have enough rehab specialists.

“… This is an area that definitely we have to work on and expand the services in this area,” he said.

These rehabilitation facilities are needed to help people overcome substance abuse, especially those persons who suffer from addiction disorders. In Guyana, Dr. Anthony said that only two non-governmental organisations (NGOs)- the Salvation Army and the Phoenix Recovery Project- offer rehabilitation services in Guyana.

Expanding the focus on rehabilitation and countering substance abuse is part of the government’s legislative agenda and with the new mental health law in place, Dr. Anthony promised that much more work will be done.

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