Thu, 22 May 2003

Legislators urge rehab for drug addicts

JAMBI, Jambi: Parents with drug-addicted children should bring them to the mental hospital for rehabilitation, urged councillors dismayed by the lack of drug addicts undergoing treatment.

Councillors of the provincial legislature recently visited Jambi mental hospital and found only two people being treated for their drug habits.

"People in Jambi, especially parents, are still reluctant to take their children to the mental hospital for treatment," chairman of the council's Commission E on welfare issues Zakie Hanim said on Wednesday.

He said Jambi has thousands of children who are addicted to drugs, but parents did not admit them for rehabilitation, fearing that people would think their children were mentally ill or retarded if they were admitted to the mental hospital, Zakie explained, quoting the hospital director.

He said that drug rehabilitation includes treatment by a psychiatrist, and the mental hospital had the facility and expertise to handle such cases. -- Antara