Coronavirus Pandemic

Combating Covid-19: Free mental health consultation for UAE residents

Dhanusha Gokulan (Principal Correspondent)/Dubai Filed on March 31, 2020
Combating Covid-19, Covid-19, UAE, mental health consultation

(Photo: Alamy)

Based on the doctor's availability, residents can avail free video therapy sessions for a week.

A UAE- based healthcare group is offering free psychological counselling to those fighting stress, anxiety or depression caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

UAE's VPS Healthcare has joined hands with India's psycho-social rehabilitation centre, Cadabam's, to set up an online mental health support system.

VPS Cadabams Mindtalk is a 24x7 online support system will provide services of a dedicated team of psychologists, who will be attending to each person through video conferencing, Dr Reena Thomas, a clinical psychologist at Medeor Hospital, Dubai, a unit of VPS Healthcare told Khaleej Times.

"Imposition of stricter measures such as confinement to rooms, physical distancing, quarantining, travel restrictions and more have pushed many into depression," said Dr Thomas. "Also, there are cases where people manifesting any symptoms such as mild flu or cough turn panic, fearing they might have contracted the virus," she added.

The psychologists will offer support for cases related to addiction medicine, child and adolescent psychiatry, geriatric psychiatry and adult psychiatry. Interested persons can reach out by calling a toll-free number 8005546 to schedule an appointment. Based on the doctor's availability, residents can avail free video therapy sessions for a week.

The psychologists can also be reached through the official website, where people have the option to undergo a pre-evaluation test through answering a questionnaire.

"People who undergo the pre-evaluation test can book an appointment with the psychologists for online consultation," she added.

"Some people may become hopeless or those with psychological issues may see their condition worsening during these times. This would be significantly helpful for patients as they do not have to visit a hospital. We hope these services will help the people in these distressing situations," explained Dr Thomas.

However, Dr Shajir Gaffar, CEO VPS Healthcare, Dubai and Northern Emirates, said, "Many, including adults and children, are cut-off from their regular lives. Our services can be availed by those who require the help and guidance of a psychologist to handle these situations."

Therapy and advice is for:

* Anxiety

* Depression

* Addiction

*  Stress Treatment

* Emotional Disorders

* Adjustment issues / isolation

* Coping with grief

* Fear of pandemic

* One-on-one individual counselling

* Family Therapy

* Online Counselling


How to reach doctors?

* Call toll free number 8005546 to schedule an appointment.

*  Go to the official website of VPS Healthcare - There is an option to schedule an appointment with doctor under the VPS Cadabams Mindtalk.


Dhanusha Gokulan

Originally from India, Dhanusha Gokulan has been working as a journalist for over ten years. For Khaleej Times, she covers NRI affairs, civil aviation, and immigration issues among other things. She completed her BA in Journalism, Economics and English Literature from Mangalore University in 2008 and is currently pursuing her MA in Leadership and Innovation in Contemporary Media at the American University in Dubai. In her spare time, she dabbles with some singing/songwriting, loves food, and is mom to an over-enthusiastic Labrador retriever. Tweet at her @shootsprintrite.

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