Training on mental health and substance abuse for AWWs


Gangtok, 01 Jun:

District Mental Health Cell of Singtam District Hospital, East Sikkim organized training programme for 80 Anganwadi Workers [AWWs] of Gangtok on 30-31 May here at Syari in East Sikkim, a press release informs.

The training programme had Dr Satish Rasaily, Dr CS Sharma, Pinkey Bhutia, Priya Gurung and Sonam Tongden as resource persons. They deliberated on the concept of mental health, early signs & symptoms of mental illnesses, childhood emotional & behavioral disorders, depression, suicidal behavior, skills for taking care of mentally ill family members, and harmful effects of tobacco, alcohol and drug abuse.

Resource person Dr Rasaily, who is also the District Nodal Officer for Mental Health, said that the objective of imparting the training is because of the fact that AWWs are an important linkage between community & service providers and thus can help in destigmatization of mental illness and encourage family members to seek help of mental health professionals.

“We are also emphasizing on prevention of mental disorders and drug addiction which demands early intervention during first 10 years of life by effective parenting skills,” he added.

Another resource person, Ms Gurung, who is also a Nurse Counselor, informed about Opioid Substitution Therapy [OST] for treatment of opioid related drug addiction such as spasmoproxyvon, pentazocin, morphine, heroin and brown sugar which is available free of cost at STNM Hospital in Gangtok, district hospitals in Singtam & Namchi and Jorethang Primary Health Centre. She urged the AWWs to spread the information about the availability of medication for drug addiction treatment in combination with therapy.