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Jakarta Post

Mentally ill often taken to traditional practitioners

  • The Jakarta Post

  /   Mon, February 13 2012   /  08:00 am

The families of people with mental illnesses in Indonesia frequently take their sick relatives to traditional medical practitioners, an official says.

According to Health Ministry mental health chief Irmansyah, many mentally ill patients had no access to medical treatment.

“We are still facing quite a huge treatment gap,” he said on Friday.

For example, Irmansyah said, 96 percent of patients with psychoses in Indonesia were brought to traditional practitioners for treatment.

Some mentally ill people received no treatment at all or were confined in inhumane conditions, he added.

Throughout the nation, thousands of people with serious mental illnesses are victims of violence, bound or shackled by family members who lack the knowledge or money for their treatment.

The number of mentally ill people shackled by their relatives across the natio...