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General News of Tuesday, 2 February 2021


Police Service, other professions must pay attention to mental health – Dr Newman

Dr. Isaac Newman Arthur is a licensed Medical Practitioner and Clinical Psychologist Dr. Isaac Newman Arthur is a licensed Medical Practitioner and Clinical Psychologist

Dr. Isaac Newman Arthur, a licensed Medical Practitioner and Clinical Psychologist, has called on institutions and organisations, including state security institutions, to pay serious attention to the issue of mental health.

Speaking in an interview with GhanaWeb on the back of recently recorded cases of suicide by police officers, Dr. Newman observed that, whilst mental health has a strong effect on the nation and the life of people, little attention has been given to that part of the health system.

According to the Clinical Psychologist, the area of mental health has been very much underestimated and underinvested in the country, something that needs to be looked at.

“I think that the police force and other professions should pay attention to the mental health of their people. Because it is one of the things that we don’t look at but it is one of the major things that affect productivity,” he indicated.

He avers that the situation may be leading to a phenomenon called presentism, where people will be physically present at work but then are not present psychologically.

He has therefore called for the creation of systems that provide easy access to mental health services for all professions, especially for those in the security profession who are at high risk of committing suicide.

“Mental health issues exist on a daily basis, you may not be bitten by a mosquito that carries malaria parasites for you to contract malaria. But when it comes to the stresses of life, when it comes to facing traumatic issues, when it comes to crisis, they are everyday issues. So, they should make mental health a part of their daily activities. Again they should arrange for all kinds of mental health professionals to have mental health talks to address their problems,” he stated.

Two officers of the Ghana Police Service have reportedly committed suicide in a space of less than 72 hours.

This adds to the growing number of suicide cases recorded within the security services over the years.

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