|Investigating Psychiatry in Greece.
(May, 7-9, 2006)
We have spent our free time on investigating psychiatry and culture in
Athens Greece. We went to a Universty Clinic and a Psychiatric
ward on a General Hospital, and we talked with 2 psychiatrists.
They explored a lot to us, and we owe them great thanks.
We found out that there are NO CLIENT NETWORKS nor any USER GROUPS of
Psychiatry in Greece. Only Family-groups and Psychiatrist-groups do
exist in Greece..
Explanations may lay in the poverty of the country. With an unemployment
rate of 10% , people don't speak about their psychic problems, otherwise
they won't get a job in the future. There is not such thing as Social
Benefit System. No job, means No Money.
Greece, as a country, is nearly bankrupt, because a lot of Industry is
moving away to other cheaper countries (Like Bulgaria). Greece is placed
under financial supervision by the European union.
Therefore, in Greece people solve their psychic problems in private
surroundings. Within the community there is a high taboo on psychiatric
This problem goes for a lot of poor countries, across all the world.
We only spoke briefly about compulsory methods. We were told by a
psychiatrist that the Isolation Cells in Greece have soft walls (with
cushions). He said it was only used when someone was dangerous to its
surroundings, and not by being a danger to himself. It seemed like the
psychiatrist was truly more involved with the patients. We got the
impression that the cells were not used very much, and not really
excessively. We want to know why.
In the Netherlands quite some students quit the psychiatric profession,
mainly because of the incompetence of the Dutch way of Mental Health Care.
They get disappointed by the impersonal approach of institutions and the
madness of strict rules and systems, where they are not able to use their
In Greece we were told that Greece people do not quit their profession. Most
students have been on a waiting list for 3-5 years to get to start their
study, and due to the high unemployment rate, they are very happy to get any
job within their profession. So they cannot oppose the Mental Health Care
System very easily, because they also need to think of themselves as well.
Psychiatric professionals in Greece actually do not have much of a choice,
even if they are willing to do improve the Mental Health Care..
As long as there is not sufficient money, this will be a burden for
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