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CPS: Mental Health is a Universal Human Right

Public Health, Social Development and Labor
CPS: Mental Health is a Universal Human Right
Sun Oct 15 2023


According to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), mental health issues affect people worldwide; Latin America and the Caribbean are no exception.

“The prevalence and incidence of mental diseases in the Caribbean are concerning, impacting men, women, and children. Depression, anxiety disorders, and substance abuse are the most common mental health issues,” CARPHA said in a statement.

Tuesday 10 October marked World Mental Health Day around the world. Mental health is a universal human right underscoring the importance of ensuring everyone has the right to access quality mental health care and support.

Mental health is a state of mental well-being that enables people to cope with the stresses of life, realize their abilities, learn well,

and work well, and contribute to their community. Mental health is a basic human right.

Collective Prevention Services (CPS), a department from the Sint Maarten Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labor, says creating awareness about mental health is part of CPS’ annual calendar of health observances.

CARPHA adds that mental, specific neurological, substance use disorders, and suicide form a subgroup of diseases and conditions that significantly cause disability and mortality globally.

In the Americas, these conditions and events are responsible for approximately a third of the total years lived with disability and a fifth of total disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), according to a report from the Pan American Health Organization.

Several Member States of CARPHA are among the top 20% of countries with the highest age standardised DALYs per 100,000 population, a PAHO report outlines. The burden is significant in young people, who often struggle with stress, anxiety, and depression.

Nearly 16 million adolescents aged 10-19 live with a mental disorder in Latin America and the Caribbean, a United Nations Children’s Fund report pointed out.

For persons who need support, the Sint Maarten Mental Health Organization (MHF) provides psychiatric care services to the population of the country. Its mission includes prevention to mitigate as much as possible the negative impact of mental disorders on individual’s wellbeing and on society.

For general information on mental health issues, you can call 542-1677 or for a mental health crisis, you can call the crisis line 520-5556 which will be answered by a professional and it’s confidential.

For more information, you can call CPS 542-1570 or 914​

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