KL has highest number of depression, anxiety cases, says Dr Zaliha


Photo: Bernama

KUALA LUMPUR: Kuala Lumpur has the highest number of depressed and anxious people in the country, said Dr Zaliha Mustafa (pic).

"In 2022, a study was done where 336,900 individuals were screened.

"It was found that the state with the highest number of those suffering from anxiety and depression were those living in the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur," the Health Minister said when replying a supplementary question raised by Mohd Sany Hamzan (PH-Hulu Langat) in Dewan Rakyat on Wednesday (March 8).

She added the study revealed that the most vulnerable were those in the B40 group and the urban poor.

She said cost of living concerns and relationship problems were among the causes for the mental health issues.

Earlier, Dr Zaliha said that most mental health issues affecting teenagers and youths were due to financial and relationship problems.

Also contributing to this, she added, were factors such as bullying, high risks behavior, drug abuse, low self-esteem or having high expectations of oneself.

She said such factors could result in stress, depression and anxiety among the young.

To address this, she said that there are 1,161 government clinics, 58 hospitals and 34 community mental health centres and four mental institutions nationwide that carry out preventive action, early detection and rehabilitation with regard to mental health issues.

She added that several programmes targeting the young have also been implemented by the ministry together with the Education Ministry and the Family, Women and Community Development Ministry.

Among them, she said was the Pearl Programme - a collaboration between her ministry and the Education Ministry – to improve coping skills and resilience among school students to deal with issues such as bullying and high risk behaviour

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