Health Ministry: Over 400,000 children in Malaysia have mental disorders

PUTRAJAYA: One in 20 children in Malaysia aged five to nine are estimated to have mental disorders including developmental disorders, says Deputy Health Minister Datuk Dr Noor Azmi Ghazali.

He said the 2019 National Health Morbidity Survey (NHMS) also found that one in eight adolescents, aged 10 to 19, have mental disorders.

He said this to reporters after launching the Malaysia Country Report and Infographic: Strengthening Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Systems and Services (MHPSS) for Children and Adolescents in East Asia and Pacific Region here Monday (Aug 29).

Dr Noor Azmi said NHMS also revealed that about 424,000 children in Malaysia have mental problems but many do not come forward to seek help.

"In Malaysia, young children and teenagers experience a high burden of poor mental health,” he said, adding that poor mental health, exposure to violence, peer victimisation and bullying, loneliness and social isolation are prevalent risk factors among the group.

On the MHPSS, he said the report highlighted critical gaps in the current response and challenges in the implementation of MHPSS among children and adolescents, including difficult or limited access to services for mental health problems, lack of empowerment in existing laws and policies, deficiencies in communication and coordination between sectors, and insufficient funding.

Dr Noor Azmi said the Health Ministry was also committed to translating the MHPSS research findings into policy and practice. - Bernama

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Dr Noor Azmi , MHPSS , children , mental disorder , NHMS


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