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Was bombarded with calls from CMs demanding essential medicines during peak of second-wave: Mandaviya

Was bombarded with calls from CMs demanding essential medicines during peak of second-wave: Mandaviya

New Delhi, Oct 5 (UNI): Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Tuesday recalled the acute shortage of essential medical supply India had to face during the peak of the second wave and how the situation affected his mental health.
The minister said that he was bombarded with calls from Chief Ministers who demanded the supply of essential medicines like ivermectin while the country braced the acute shortage of such crucial drugs.
"During the second-wave when I was the Union Minister of Chemicals and fertilisers ministry, I used to get calls from Chief Ministers asking for ivermectin and other essential drugs every day. I was also getting constant requests to give my reference for hospital admissions. That phase gave me a lot of stress and significantly affected my mental health," he said.
His remarks came while he inaugurated the UNICEF's annual publication State of The World's Children 2021, which is centred around the mental health and well being of children and adolescents.
Dr Yasmin Ali Haque, India representative to the UNICEF estimated that 50 million children and adolescents are affected by mental health conditions citing a report.
Haque said that the pandemic has exacerbated the mental health issues among children and adolescents.
"South Asia had the highest number of adolescents with mental health issues. Half of the mental issues start by age of 14. Even before COVID, children were carrying the burden of mental health issues," she added.
Dr Prathima Murthy, Director, NIMHANS, said that a variety of services including a helpline on the district level should be introduced to help vulnerable children.
Rajesh Bhushan, Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said the conversation around mental not only be heard but also encouraged.
He suggested that teachers should be trained to spot early signs of depression and other mental health issues. "They should act as a gatekeeper," Bhushan added.
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