As part of its series of monthly Open Day lectures aimed at raising public awareness on mental health issues, the Psychiatry Department at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) will hold a public lecture tomorrow on the relationship between religion and psychiatry.
The lecture will be held 31 January, 2013 at 6pm the Psychiatry Department premises near The Center roundabout, and will be delivered by Dr. Taher Shaltout, Senior Consultant of Psychiatry at HMC.
“There is a considerable overlap between religion and psychiatry, whether positive or negative. An example of a negative relationship between the two manifests in folk beliefs or superstitions which may impede or delay proper diagnosis and treatment, and make a patient’s recovery more difficult. These superstitions include belief in witchcraft or that an illness is the effect of jealousy or the work of fairies,” said Dr. Shaltout.
“Instead of seeking medical attention, people who believe in these superstitions may employ incantations for patients suffering severe psychological problems that need urgent treatment, such as schizophrenia, depression and mania. If medical treatment is not sought, these conditions may lead to severe complications,” Dr Shaltout explained.
Dr Shaltout will welcome questions and comments from the audience after his lecture.
Dr. Hazim Hashem, Chairman of the Psychiatry Department said the lectures are delivered by physicians from the Psychiatry Department and aim to familiarize the public on psychological health issues and ways of managing or coping with these issues and safeguarding their health. He added, “The event encourages discussions between the physician and the public, which allows the physician to become acquainted with specific challenges being faced by different individuals, respond to their inquiries and help them in enhancing their mental health and that of their loved ones.”