BY CHRYSEE G. SAMILLANO
An ordinance establishing the Mental Health Psycho Social Support (MHPSS) Council of Bacolod was passed on first reading Wednesday by the Bacolod Sangguniang Panlungsod.
The ordinance authored by Councilor Cindy Rojas is part of the city’s campaign to combat the effects of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). It aims to protect and promote psychosocial well-being of individuals and communities affected by the virus.
The city government of Bacolod recognizes the importance of the mental health of its constituents, its returning locally stranded individuals (LSI), overseas Filipino workers (OFW), and frontline workers in times of calamity, public health emergency, and pandemic, the ordinance said.
On July 2, the Bacolod City Inter-Agency Task Force against COVID-19 met with several mental health professionals to bolster the city government’s response to COVID-19.
The MHPSS will have the authority to promulgate additional guidelines and come up with activities to promote the mental health of all Bacoleňos.
The Council will also tap the support of the private sector and coordinate with the existing structures and services within the inter-agency against coronavirus (IATF) to strengthen the city’s response against COVID-19.
The initial funding needed for the ordinance will be P300,000 to be charged against the current appropriation of the CHO of the DRRMO.
The MHPSS will be composed of the city mayor as chairman, vice mayor as co-chairman, and SP Committee on Health and Sanitation as vice chairman with the representatives from the CHO, DRRMO, Department of Social Services and Development, the Action Team on non-OFW returning residents (ATNORR), Action Team in Returning OFWs (ATRO), and representatives from the private sector as members.*