A report which deals with the mental health of people has called on the Irish health service providers to bring to absolute diminishment the dependence on prescribed drugs or medications. The report says this should be done by means of increasing the investment in medical counseling and as well talk therapies.
When pointing to the Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy view, it makes it clear that medication has absolutely dominated in the treatment of mental illness, but it advises that efforts are needed to discontinue this- thus not making it the first option for an individual.
According to the report, €400m is spent on psychotropic medication annually when compared to what is spent annually on counseling, which is estimated to be just €10.
This whooping amount spent on this kind of medication alone should be discontinued, according to the report; so as to focus on the most important matters.
There has been lack of talk therapy to help individuals and families.
The money put on mental health services by the HSE this year was €917m of the overall. The HSE are thus spending 40 times more on medication than counseling service so as to treat mental illnesses. It has been accused of not listening to advice on mental health issues since those battling mental illnesses need more access to counseling and talk therapies with less reliance on medication.
Speaking on the issue, the Pieta House founder and committee chairperson Joan Freeman said:
“The Committee has realized in the course of its deliberations that primary care, which is vital to the efficient delivery of services, is hampered by problems with recruitment, which is in turn affected by funding problems.
“While we welcome the fact that the HSE came before the committee on numerous occasions to answer our questions and provided us with high-level information on funding, we remain dissatisfied with the level of specifics we received from them on the subject.
“The committee felt that the HSE did not drill down enough into the spending figures to show us exactly where money is being spent on the front line and this frustrated Committee Members.”
The report says there needs to be a realistic timeframe for the provision of 24/7 intervention teams across the country.
It also points to the fact that the services of travelers, migrants, and LGBTI people should be funded since there are issues facing these individuals.