We have spoken quite a few times on Reliable Counter about the safe use of cannabis and along the lines of many heath related technology however something that seems to be launching forward on the internet at the moment is the de-centralisation of mental health services where individuals and patients are seeking psychiatric help from professionals based in South Africa via online meetings and Skype.

 

There are a number of motivations for this in that mental health treatment specifically in addiction recovery in European countries and North America generally comes at a steep in-country cost whereas the Dollar, Pound and Euro exchange to South African Rand is a much more affordable and tenable alternative to treatment for patients in their home country.

 

South Africa over the last 10 years has also seen a severely hampered economy however one of the largest growing industries in South African travel is the addiction treatment market. This can be attributed to a number of factors including the epidemic of opioid use in the United States and the influx of PTSD suffering war veterans has placed state mental health services on the back foot in being able to successfully treat so many cases. So many people in America are unable to find highly trained and experienced mental health professionals and / or simply cannot afford inpatient and primary care services, or are geographically not able to get to psychiatric counselling, thus they are forced to convert their mode of treatment to internet based therapy sessions.

 

Of course once you make the mind leap of being treated over the internet for mental health concerns such as addiction, depression, anxiety and all the other topics that transverse the field of treatment then it no longer matters where a therapist is physically located so long as they speak your language, can do the job, it then comes down to their experience and a simple question of cost for quality treatment.

 

I did a bit of poking around on cost of South Africa’s 5 star addiction treatment centres and where for $200 USD in the States the same if not better treatment is dispensed at around $20 per hour. So for roughly 10% of treatment cost in the US you can speak to professionals in South Africa that professionally handle the same topics.

 

Mental health and particular topics surrounding depression and anxiety affect far deeper into our communities than I think most of us realise. Just looking at Facebook streams we almost universally all have a friend if not ourselves that is on some or other mood enhancing drug or struggling with a an eating disorder or traumatised by deeply recessed emotional baggage that can be simply and discreetly dealt with over a few Skype sessions in a foreign country.

 

 

Man the internet is cool! It’s the dawn of another new era.

 

Take a look at

Relapse Prevention in South Africa (Their largest mental health referral network)

Recovery Direct 5 Star Rehab in Cape Town (Premium residential mental health clinic)