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The Boston Globe

World

Groups working to improve mental health care in Africa

KAMPALA, Uganda — The drugs given to many of Africa’s psychiatric patients are often administered to keep the patients asleep so the harried nurses can get some rest, and those who cannot sleep may have their hands or feet tied up.

Yet these patients may be considered lucky, because across Africa most of those who need psychiatric care don’t ever get it. Caregivers are few and health facilities even fewer, tragic circumstances on a continent where armed conflict, disease, and rampant poverty have left millions of people traumatized and in urgent need of professional help.

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