Over 81,000 people received mental illness treatment in two years: Aasandha

Over 81,000 people have been treated for mental illness under the National Health Insurance Scheme, Aasandha, in the past two years.

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih had pledged to open a special clinic for mental illness and provide treatment under Aasandha. As per the President's pledge, a mental health clinic called the Center for Mental Health was opened at the government's main hospital, IGMH, on March 1, 2019.

In February 2020, the government arranged for some mental illness treatments provided by private clinics and hospitals to be covered under the Aasandha scheme. This included psychologist consultation, psychological assessment, and psychological therapy services.

A total of MVR 5,000 per person per year is allocated for each individual under the scheme. However, those registered in the NSPA register of persons with disabilities will receive free treatment without the cap as per policy.

According to the Aasandha company, a total of 81,864 people have received treatment for mental illness under the Aasandha scheme in the last two years. This includes 43,988 people treated in 2020 and 37,876 people in 2021. While MVR 14.2 million was utilized for the purpose in 2020, MVR 11.4 million was spent in 2021.

The number of people seeking treatment for mental illness has increased dramatically in the Maldives. There is no official research on the reasons why many people are seeking treatment for mental illness in the Maldives.