(SPOT.ph) Until recently, the issue of mental health has never been openly discussed in the Philippines. Despite the passage of the Mental Health law, the negative stigma against it still affects the way people see mental health. But like every other health concern, mental health disorders should be treated accordingly.
Unfortunately, psychiatric services don't come cheap and are often inaccessible. According to the World Health Organization, only 3% of government spending worldwide goes into public mental healthcare, so those who can't afford regular rates often leave their conditions untreated. There are, however, a few places in the Philippines offering their services for free and here's where you can find them:
Amang Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center
The medical center's acute psychiatric clinic offers basic consultations and brief psychotherapeutic techniques to help their patients.
Amang Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center is at Sumulong Highway, Sto Niño, Marikina City.
National Center for Mental Health
While the consultation isn't actually free, it is considerably affordable at P400. They do, however, give out free medication to their patients. It operates under the Department of Health as a Special Research Training Center and Hospital.
National Center for Mental Health is at Nueve de Pebrero Street, Mauway, Mandaluyong City.
Ateneo Center for Family Ministries
The Spiritual-Pastoral Center mainly provides family and couple counseling, but they also provide free psychiatric consultation using a psycho-spiritual approach. Counseling sessions are scheduled by appointment. If it's your first session, come 15 minutes earlier than your scheduled appointment to fill out necessary forms. Services are free but donations are encouraged.
Ateneo Center for Family Ministries is at Seminary Drive, Ateneo de Manila University, Loyola Heights, Quezon City.
Philippine General Hospital
The Philippine General Hospital's Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine Department offers free psychiatric consultations. Long queues should be expected but the consultations are available for 24 hours.
Philippine General Hospital is at 2/F Ward 7, 1730 Taft Avenue, Ermita, Manila.
UST Graduate School's Psychotrauma Clinic
The clinic offers free psychological services including assessment and evaluation, counseling, and individual or group psychotherapy. It's open to everyone and has been offering their services since 2002.
UST Graduate School Psychotrauma Clinic is at España Boulevard, Sampaloc, Manila.
Here's a list of counseling hotlines in the Philippines:
Mobile: 0917-800-1123 and 0922-893-8944
Landline: 525-1753 and 525-1881