Around 200 quake victims in Chiang Rai severely traumatized

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CHIANG RAI, 8 May 2014 (NNT) – The Department of Mental Health has discovered that around 200 people in Chiang Rai were severely stressed after having been traumatized by the magnitude 6.3 earthquake that struck the province on Monday, and some of them were at risk of developing post-traumatic stress disorder.

Department director-general Chetsada Chokdamrongsuk said mental health crisis assessment and treatment teams (MCATT) have been dispatched from Suan Prung hospital in Chiang Mai to assist the MCATT teams already working in Mae Lao and Phan districts of Chiang Rai, to augment the mental health response effort for the quake victims. Dr. Chetsada revealed that traumatized victims did not want to stay inside their homes, and panicked over rumors of the ground splitting apart or the Mae Suai Dam bursting. Such victims were sleep-deprived and had trouble breathing normally. He said most of the conditions should get better within 2 weeks to one month, if adequate assistance is provided to the sufferer.

Dr. Phongkasem Khaimuk, deputy director-general of the Mental Health Department, indicated that many of the cases of severe stress were in Mae Lao district, where some locals were still hesitating to approach the sites they were at when the quake struck.

Correspondent : Namo Vananupong
Rewriter : Suvicha Jirakittikul