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Pakistan’s First Free Mental Health Helpline, Talk2Us – Helps Fight the Stigma of Struggling

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Pakistan has one of the lowest patient-to-doctor ratios in mental health in the world. There are less than 400 trained psychiatrists nation-wide, which is approximately one psychiatrist per half-million people. Mental health services are also stunted due to the lack of implementing mechanisms for relevant legislation, with only 2.4 percent of the country’s annual expenditure going towards health, of which less than two percent is allocated for mental health specifically.  

 

Talk2Us – Pakistan’s First Free Mental Health Service 

They assure and provide access to services and supports to meet the mental health needs of individuals of all ages, enabling them to live, work and participate in their communities.  

Adeel H Chaudhry the founder left his ten years of a corporate career and moved back to Pakistan to launch Talk2Us- the first mental health helpline run by clinical psychologists 24/7 after a close friend lost his life due to this plague.  

  

The stigma of struggling with mental health 

In a country where 22 million are struggling with mental health, the taboo and stigma doesn’t allow them to even talk to their own and they suffer in pain for years  

  • Youngsters are going through the worst drug epidemic with the introduction of meth and heroin as cheap as 1000 rupees a gram.  
  • Young girls are an addiction to over the counter pills and lexotinal and Xanax are becoming a daily habit to them.   

With the day-to-day rise in mental health concerns in Pakistan, the country hasn’t been doing very well concerning mental health care.  

  

How does Talk2Us helpline operate?  

  1. Clients reach the counselor through the main operator who is contacted through the main number.  
  2. The operator collects basic information regarding the client’s age, gender and the nature of the problem. This makes the operator better equipped in deciding which counselor is best suited to tackle the client following their availability and expertise.  
  3. The client is given a time slot and the name of a counselor whom they can contact. If the case is severe (concerning suicidal thoughts or severe distress), the client is given an immediate time slot to ensure their safety.  

We recommend a total of 6 sessions that last for 50 mins to begin the therapeutic journey.  

All documentation, call logging and overviews of each case are recorded. 

 

Seeing the future with optimism 

With the new budget out now, we’re hoping to see some positive changes in the annual expenditure allotted towards mental health. Talk2Us.pk have done over 20,000 clinical sessions and are working around the clock to make a difference but we are also in peril with no donations or pledges to the cause. 

 

 

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