A Medical Practitioner, Dr. Olasumbo Davidson has called on the federal government to evolve a system that will compel citizens to undergo periodic screening in order to lower the suicide rate in the country.
Davidson made the call while speaking with journalists yesterday in Abeokuta, the Ogun state capital over the alarming rate at which people terminate their lives without caution.
Worried by the development however, Davidson, a clinical director said it would not be out of place if Nigerian government could take a queue from the foreign countries which have adopted depression screening as first step in medical diagnosis to all ailments to enable healthcare personnel and government tame the menace of suicide in the bud.
Davidson who hinted that in foreign countries, patients are usually screened for depression before any further treatments, also urged Nigerian doctors to cultivate such habit.
”In foreign countries now whether you complain to me about the depression or not am screening you,as far as you are in the hospital, I am going to screen you for depression but this is not happening in Nigeria.
“So when you don’t screen people for depression you assume everybody is feeling very happy,which is absolutely wrong,so we need to do more about mental health in this country”
She also maintained that doctors must be able to pick people who are depressed before they kill themselves.
The medical doctor equally stressed the need to setup a mental health program which, she said would allow doctors to screen people for depression and identify those people who are living with it.
“We must recognized high risk patient. We call them high risk because they are at risk to committing suicide. People who are having frustrating challenges lost their job,no family,maybe an addict. failure in school.
”There are many issues combined together that lead to frustrations and when you see people who have all these parameters all combined that person is at risk and should be monitored and put under a rapitic environment where somebody will be counselling them” She concluded