Psychotherapy is a broad term that refers to the therapeutic interventions or treatments made between a trained practitioner and a client, family or a group of individuals.
Basically, psychotherapy aims to improve a person’s well-being by employing a wide range of different techniques mainly by building a mutually beneficial relationship between the client and the trained professional, creating an open and honest communication between them, and encouraging behavior changes especially intended to improve the client’s mental health or sometimes to build a harmonious and nurturing environment among family members and colleagues.
Psychotherapy can be performed by professionals with a number of varying qualifications including mental health counseling, school and rehabilitation counseling and psychiatric nursing.
When understood better, this field plays a vital role among Filipinos since it is well known that there is already an increasing number of psychological disturbances our countrymen are suffering from.
Are Filipinos open with this form of treatment? What do they think about this?
Of course, we all have different perspectives towards this issue. Generally, in spite of huge developments on Philippine’s health system, there still remains to have a poor understanding and acceptance because of several contributing factors.
One negating factor is due to the society’s low-level of awareness on these medical support. We cannot hide the fact that there are still quite a number of regions or far-flung communities where medical assistance remains to be a dream, a vision alone.
There are still areas in the country that are not yet reached by proper authorities to give even a single shot of a flu vaccine. How can one opt for psychotherapy when they can barely eat three times daily?
So instead of psychotherapy a lot of people, especially in far-flung areas, choose alternative treatments in the form of herbal healing, while others perform cult healing. With this, matched with unstable health insurance system and delayed action from some of the government officials have reduced the chances of having some formal institutes for psychotherapy and this explains why the country has no training ground for people interested in practicing such medical field.
It is also hard to suggest on having formal psychotherapy in the Philippines because as we all know Filipino mentality is circulated on excuses when it comes to behavior modifications and when subjected to various psychological treatments. Some people are being ashamed to be tagged as having mental disorder when actually he is only consulting for some minor psychological help.
Stereotyping and stigma are also two of the hindrances that pose a great barricade in consulting problems that need to be addressed. It’s about time to change all these mentalities and move closer to a better understanding of the benefits one can avail with improved health care system such as introducing formal psychotherapy in the country.