NHRC Secretary General Maryam bint Abdullah al-Attiyah has stressed that attention to the mental health of citizens and residents in Qatar remains one of the main pillars of the strategy of the National Committee, which was proactive in demanding the development of a mental health law, and providing feedback before its issuance.
She stressed that the NHRC is keen that all citizens and residents in Qatar get the right to psychological treatment, and accordingly, legal experts from the committee regularly visit mental health institutions to investigate and follow up on the quality of mental health services they provide, and to present the necessary consultations to address problems, and complaints are received by the committee, whether at its headquarters, or via hotlines, and various other communication channels.
Al-Attiyah said in a press statement on the occasion of the World Mental Health Day, which falls on October 10 every year, that the National Human Rights Committee has monitored the efforts of Qatar to develop psychological care services through the inauguration of more hospitals and health centres and the increase of specialised medical personnel.
Al-Attiyah expressed confidence that the authorities concerned in Qatar will continue their efforts to ensure the development of psychological care for patients, including the development of services provided by public and private health institutions, so as to ensure the enjoyment of all citizens and members of communities living in Qatar, and their access to the right to psychological care, as stated in various national laws, legislation and universal human rights conventions.
She explained that psychotherapy is a right for all segments of society and has been guaranteed by international conventions and international humanitarian laws, adding that psychiatric services must also take a social path through primary healthcare centres.
She pointed to the most important development goals contained in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which Qatar is working on, mainly to eradicate poverty, provide good health and well-being, gender equality, decent work and economic growth, and climate action.
She added that the implementation of these goals falls within the framework of ensuring the provision of a range of rights, including the right to education, the right to housing, dignity, well-being, health, and employment, as well as the rights of workers, the right of women, gender equality, and the right to life.
The NHRC secretary-general underlined the attention given by the committee, in co-operation with a number of competent authorities in the country, by advocating the promotion of human rights and the anti-discrimination perspective in mental healthcare, adding that all mental health policies and plans are in line with internationally recognised human rights frameworks.
She added that the National Committee is also keen to raise awareness in the community to face some of the obstacles facing psychiatric patients, through holding a series of workshops and awareness seminars and the need to pay attention to mental health, and to overcome the difficulties and challenges facing mental health patients.
She stressed the commitment of NHRC to defend the rights of victims of the unjust blockade who have been subjected to serious violations of their basic rights, especially the right to health and treatment, which has resulted in health and psychological damage that is difficult to redress for many years, especially in light of the continued restrictions and violations that affect them.
She pointed out that NHRC is discussing with some international centres specialised in assessing the psychological damage to those affected by the blockade, especially women and children, in order to raise an integrated file for the judicial and human rights bodies.