More Filipinos are seeking emotional support from experts due to the coronavirus pandemic and the lockdown put in place to contain it, the chief of the National Center for Mental Health (NCMH) told the Senate on Thursday.
NCMH Director Dr. Roland Cortez said that prior to the outbreak of COVID-19, they were receiving 60 to 80 calls a month from people suffering depression and anxiety.
But with government imposing lockdowns, the center is now being bombarded with 300 to 400 calls per month from Filipinos who want somebody to talk with about their fears, Cortez added.
He said that NCMH’s 24/7 hotlines are now being “bombarded” with calls as Filipinos grapple with being locked down in their homes.
Cortez said the problem is also being experienced by Filipinos abroad, thus the NCMH has extended the same helplines to them through the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration.