Many Zimbabweans stepped into the New Year with dull and sad faces. Surviving the ‘wrath’ of 2020 was one of many people’s greatest achievement in the face of the deadly Coronavirus pandemic that has so far claimed millions and left many with a trail of mental health issues.
By Claudia Chimbo
During the first week of the year, Zimbabwe deputy president and health minister, Constantino Chiwenga announced the second stiffer national lockdown to curb the scourge of the second wave of the pandemic that has hit the country.
In the past, mental health issues have always been sidelined and given little attention but, with the recently announced stricter national lockdown, there is likely to be a rise in the number of people being affected by mental related issues caused by the emergency lockdown.
In an interview with a Senior Clinical Psychologist Dr Tarisai Bere, she indicated that the recently announced lockdown with stiffer regulations, there is likely to be a rise in the number of cases related to depression and anxiety due to the increased numbers in death and the effects of the economic situation.
Zimbabwe Sentinel spoke to Clara Chambalama, a Clinical Supervisor/Trainer at the Friendship Bench and she revealed that her organisation is experiencing high volumes of people that are being affected by mental health issues.
Chambalama also alluded that there are many misconceptions about mental health and the subject which leads to stigmatization hence the need to raise more awareness about mental health.
“Mental Health issues should also be taken seriously and for many to survive this lockdown there is need for dissemination of correct information on mental health and how people can be helped to overcome these challenges” Chalambama said.