Thursday, January 30, 2020

Clinics that Provide Free Psychiatric Consultation in the Philippines

Fidget Spinner helps ease anxiety
I recently watched the Hollywood film, "Joker" starring Joaquin Phoenix. And although Phoenix gave justice to the lead role, I can’t help but I felt sort of devastated after seeing the said film. I felt "heavy" and I wish mental health would be given more attention here in the Philippines. Although the first mental health act legislation in the history of the Philippines has been officially signed into law and was enacted as the Republic Act no. 11036 last June 2018, still it needs more help. 

The said controversial bill provides a rights-based mental health bill and a comprehensive framework for the implementation of optimal mental healthcare in the Philippines. As a mental health advocate, I'd like to share with you a list of clinics that provides free psychiatric consultation  in the Philippines. 

Let us make it clear that setting an appointment for a consultation with a psychiatrist isn't synonymous to mental illness. Stigma is when someone sees you in a negative way because of your mental illness. Discrimination is when someone treats you in a negative way because of your mental illness. Social stigma and discrimination can make mental health problems worse and stop a person from getting the help they need. This also prevents someone from making that first step on getting that first consultation. 

Now the question is, where can we seek solace when we feel the blues? It is common knowledge that psychiatric consultation may cost us a leg and an arm. Luckily, due to the initiative of certain individuals and organizations, there are clinics that offers free psychiatric consultations in the country today. The key is to book an appointment and to come early during your given slot. 

Check out these clinics that care for our minds as well:

Philippine General Hospital (PGH)
Address: Taft Avenue, Ermita, Manila, 1000 Metro Manila
Contact Number: (02) 8554.8400

Individuals seeking free psychiatric help need to get a referral from the Out-Patient Department (OPD) which is open from Mondays-Fridays from 9AM-4PM.

National Center for Mental Health
Address: Nueve de Pebrero St. Mauway, Mandaluyong City
Contact Number: (02) 85319001
Consultation Hours: 8AM-4PM (Mondays to Sundays)

Individuals who are seeking free psychiatric help have to undergo an interview with a group of social workers. 

Ateneo Center for Family Ministries (CEFAM)
Address: Seminary Road, Marikina, 1800 Metro Manila
Çontact Number: (02) 84264289
Consulation Hours: 8AM-5PM (Mondays-Fridays)

Provides free consultation, family and individual counseling via a psycho-spiritual approach.

*Donation basis, no set fees charged.

Amang Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center
Address: Sumulong Highway Sto. Nino, Marikina
Contact Number: (02) 89415854
Consultation Hours:8AM-5PM (Mondays to Fridays)

University of Sto. Tomas Graduate School Psychotrauma Clinic (UST)
Address: Espana Blvd., Sampaloc, Manila
Room 104, Ground Floor, Thomas Aquinas Research Complex
University of Sto. Tomas
Contact Number: (02) 4061611 (loc 4012)
Consultation Hours: Tuesdays to Saturdays 10AM-5PM (except during holidays, class suspensions and school breaks.)

Provides free psychological services (e.g. assessment and evaluation, counseling, and individual and group psychotherapy)

Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center (EVRMC)
Address: Corner Enage St., Magsaysay Blvd. Tacloban City, Leyte
Contact Number: (053) 3237110

Provides free consultation and medication assistance.

Batangas Medical Center 
Address: Bihi Road, Kumintang Ibaba, Batangas City
Contact Number: (043) 7408307
Consultation Hours: Mondays-Wednesdays and Thursdays 8AM-5PM

Cainta Municipal Hospital
Address: Bonifacio Avenue, Rose Pack Compound, Cainta, Rizal
Contact Number: (02) 6962604
Clinic Hours: 24 Hours

Provides free consultation for residents, and free medication (if available from the hospital)

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