We consider the signing of Republic Act No. 11036, otherwise known as the “Mental Health Act,” as a testament of the President’s commitment to provide accessible and affordable mental health care and services to all Filipinos.
It forms part of the government’s mandate to design and implement a national mental health program and integrate this as part of the health information system, among others.
The passage of the law, which I co-authored when I was still in Congress, recognizes mental disorders as illness which can be diagnosed and treated. We hope this policy will help neutralize the stigma attached to mental illness.
Implementing a universal mental healthcare system in the country would provide more awareness regarding mental health among Filipinos, especially given the rising number of suicide cases among the youth.