Over 3,000 Filipinos seek mental health support since January amid COVID-19 pandemic

2021-03-22 11:36:13 GMT2021-03-22 19:36:13(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

MANILA, March 22 (Xinhua) -- Over 3,000 Filipinos have sought phone counselling over mental health issues since January this year amid the COVID-19 pandemic, a Philippine Department of Health official said on Monday.

"This is one of the things that we are closely watching during this pandemic. We are cognizant that the calls for mental help have spiked," Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in an online briefing.

As of March 15, the National Center for Mental Health (NCMH) has provided online health services to 3,006 Filipinos, said Vergeire, citing "anxiety and depression, stressful life event, mood concerns" as reasons for the calls.

Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) data also showed an increase in the number of people committing suicide in 2020 compared to 2019.

"From 2,808 registered deaths due to intentional self-harm in 2019, this (number) spiked to 3,529 in 2020," the PSA said in a report released on March 16. Enditem