Former Deputy Minister of Health, Mr Robert Joseph Mettle-Nunoo, has donated some psychotropic medicines worth €8,000 to the Mental Health Authority, (MHA) in Accra.
The donation was done on behalf of Medimex SK and Glenmarck Pharmaceuticals s. r. o (Czech Republic) and her collaborating partners, Stryde Consult Limited, Ghana.
The medicines consist of Lyxit and Despra, both of which are antidepressants, and aripiprazole, a tranquilizer to treat psychosis or major psychiatric disorders like schizophrenia.
Mr Mettle-Nunoo said “in all, there are 400 packs of 28 tablet each, making a total of 11,200 tablets.”
He said the Government of Ghana and especially the Ministry of Health had been supporting mental health care all along in the crusade to bring better quality to the Ghanaian population through the provision of genuine quality and efficacious medical drugs, equipment and supplies.
He said they were well aware of the huge challenges of health generally, and the problems in mental health in particular, and the government alone could not shoulder every aspect of it.
Mr Mettle-Nunoo said although the presentation was quite small, it marked a significant opportunity for a lasting relationship, adding that it was part of their initial social responsibility to the country.
“While this may not amount to much, at least it is intended as a gesture of love and compassion to our brothers and sisters with these related mental health challenges. In fact, if one hospital were to use them, it could take up to six months for cases of depression.”
He said the drugs treat a wide range of mental health conditions and represent current global standard protocols for the treatment of some mental health challenges.
The former minister said, while these medications represent a token gesture, they also represent a reminder to all that some mental illnesses these days were lifestyle related, and often times treatable.
Greater public education and awareness was required to remove stigma from such conditions, he said.
He said stress and depression as well as the abuse of drugs and the large consumption of un-prescribed medications continued to increase the numbers of persons suffering from mental illness, especially the youth.
“We trust that these medicines will be used judiciously to treat mental patients whose medical conditions will be greatly improved by the proper application of prescribed ‘ clinical protocols and care, as well as go a long way to support the medicine needs of our clients and mental health workforce.”
Medimex SK is a limited liability company promoting the wholesaling and distribution of its flagship brand drugs and biomedical equipment and products.
“We envisage that through mutually beneficial investments and collaboration, we may be able to develop and consolidate investment in Africa, in first generation and generic pharmaceutical brands and products.
Dr Akwesi Osei, Chief Executive Officer MHA, receiving the medications expressed appreciation to the former minister and Medimex SK for the presentation that looked small, yet very significant to mental health.
He said without medicines of this calibre, mental health care was quite deficient.
He noted that the significance of this donation lied in the fact that we did not always have to wait for the government to discharge all these responsibilities, but individuals could help in various ways.
Dr Osei said they cherished the kind gesture and assured that it would be very beneficial to the patients, and expressed the hope that it became a lasting relationship by which they would regularly be sending some medications in larger quantities and in greater diversity.