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Mariveles Mental Ward
Written by Cherry   
Thursday, 03 March 2011

It started in the early 80's when Mariveles Mental Ward becomes congested with patients. Its capacity is only 500 but the population boomed to 1000. Only 2 doctors were able to attend to this number of patients. Most of the patients came from the National Mental Hospital in Mandaluyong.

Dr. Rolando Palacol, one of the first resident-physicians, made the move to avoid congestion. He wrote to the relatives of the inmates. He asked them to visit or claim their mentally ill relative. Some relatives visited and claimed their mentally ill patient; many elderly patients died in the ward. This lessens the number of patients to 700.


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In 1986, another strategy was lead by Dr. Efren Reyes, a Task Force on Mental Health. This will maintain the number of patients in the hospital.  Under this policy, only mental cases from Central Luzon should be confined at MMW and the patients from other regions must not be transferred to MMW.  The Acute Crisis Intervention Service or ACIS will assist the MMW patients by observing them for three days. Medication like rapid tranquilization or electroconvulsion will be also administered. A therapy will also be provided to control violent and suicidal tendencies of patients. The patient’s relative will be required to stay to observe the reactions of their ill patient.  After three days, the patient will be able to have a normal sleep and a controlled behavior. He will be advised to go home provided that weekly and monthly check-up will be followed. If the patient still manifest unusual behavior after this 3-day observation period, he will be re-admitted to the ward. The maximum length of hospitalization should be seven months.

According to Dr. Sarah Rivera, resident- physician, the social rehabilitation of the patients must be given importance. Tuesdays and Fridays are the scheduled days for singing and dancing of the patients at the social hall. Gardening is the other type of therapy. The attendants supervise the patient as they plant trees, flowering plants and foliages around the mental ward. They also clean the surrounding by sweeping the garbage. Other recreational activities are given to the patients like TV/movie viewing from 1 pm to 4 pm. According to MMW Director Dr. Lourdes Evangelista, the patients must be accompanied by their relatives going to the ward.  For inquiries, call MMW at telephone number 047 935- 4613.

 
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