The newly built Yeka Kotebe General Hospital is believed to bring dramatic change in the Ethiopian mental health services as it is primarily dedicated to address burdens related to mental health.
Hospital Medical Director Abel Tesfaye told The Ethiopian Herald that the hospital has already started its pilot service recently. When it goes fully functional, it is expected to render mental health care and general medical services including surgery.
According to the director, out of the total 350 beds in the hospital, 175 are dedicated to mental health patients and currently the hospital is rendering services for about 150 out patients on a daily basis.
Abel said : " The hospital is also playing crucial role in reducing the burden of St. Amanuel Hospital as we have started treating mental health patients."
The hospital has been furbished with major medical equipment and medicines, he said, adding that about 500 employees are working in the hospital.
According to him, the number of staff would reach to 1,800 when the hospital goes operational with its full capacity.
One of the patients, Siranesh Molla, told The Ethiopian Herald that the construction of the hospital in that area is a relief to the surrounding people as they easily access mental health treatment.
Kibnesh Sahile was at the waiting room while this reporter approached her. She said: "I am here with my mother who is referred to this hospital from St. Amanuel."
According to her, they had to wait long at St. Amanue hospital to get service in the past as there were so many patients but here now they see doctors on time.
The construction of the Ethiopian Mental Health Institution is underway inside the hospital. When it sees completion, the institute is expected to be a center for new researches and studies aimed at boosting the mental health service, it was learnt.