Problems with Mental Health Policy in Morocco Allow for Tragedy with Questionable Undertones

Molly Mulroy, SIT Graduate Institute - Study Abroad

Morocco: Field Studies in Journalism and New Media

The Pitch

In Morocco, organizations have reported that insufficient resources are available for assisting mental health patients. In 2012, the Moroccan National Council for Human Rights reported only one psychiatrist for not even every 110,000 people in Morocco a problem that the World Health Organization reports for half of the world’s population.

In Casablanca, a health clinic with clandestine psychiatric practices has been open for 40 years as the authorities have been turning a blind eye to its operations. Last November, a 77 year old man was burnt alive in the clinic, Notre Dame, where he was being treated for insomnia. The tragedy of his death has brought attention on the dysfunction of the mental health system in a country where some people still go to traditional healers.