Dispatch from Crame No. 756: Sen. Leila M. de Lima’s Statement on Urging the Attention to Mental Health during COVID-19 Crisis


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We are in Week 3 of the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ). And while the initial period set expires in two weeks, there is still no end in sight. As the global COVID-19 pandemic pushes further into 2020, the collective feelings of fear, anxiety and sorrow are beginning to affect many of our countrymen.

A new concern is surfacing — the mental and psychological health of people. If not immediately addressed, it will be like poison that will creep through the lives of many in ways that could sometimes be more lethal.

In a time where uncertainty fills the atmosphere, stress and anxiety pushes everyone closer to the brink of despair, from our government officials and enforcers of the ECQ, to our frontline health workers, to the people who are forced to stay at home to avoid further spreading of the virus.

Halo-halong lungkot, kaba, takot, paranaoia at pag-aalinlangan ang nananaig sa bawat mamamayang Pilipino at patuloy pa itong mananaig hanggang sa mga susunod na araw, o linggo hangga’t wala pang lunas sa malubhang sakit na ito at patuloy na tumataas ang bilang ng mga kaso ng COVID-19 sa ating bansa.

Measures that would ease the mental, emotional and psychological burden that people endure during the period of ECQ should be part of government’s crisis response plan. Proper and effective implementation of R.A. No. 11036, or the “Mental Health Act” ought to be as an integral part of the national strategy against COVID-19.

I pray for all our kababayans – may the Filipino fighting spirit win over the dark thoughts that loom our minds, and may we offer compassion and kindness to one another during these trying times. Let’s please check on one another, even those who we think are the strong ones. While obliged to keep physical distance from each other, may we not be socially disconnected from one another.

This too shall pass. Kapit lang mga kababayan, malalampasan din natin itong pagsubok na ito. Kasama kayo palagi sa mga dasal ko. Tibayan pa natin ang ating loob at pananampalataya. ###

(Access the handwritten copy of Dispatch from Crame No. 756, here: https://issuu.com/senatorleilam.delima/docs/dispatch_756)

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