The Institute of Mental Health is about to undertake a 12 month national mental health survey using a representative sample of 6,500 Singaporeans.
The survey not only endeavors to identify the level of mental fitness amongst the nation but will also delve into the impact of mental health disorders on individuals who engage in online gambling and their families.
Challenges Known but Effects Unclear
Associate Professor Chong Siow Ann, the Vice Chairman for Research at the Institute said, "The challenges to the mental well-being of Singapore residents, such as increasing divorce rates and an ageing population, are growing, but the impact of mental illness in Singapore is not well-understood. This study aims to give us a clearer picture of the mental-health scene in Singapore."
Wider, More Social Remit
The last national survey was carried out in 2004 and focused on depressive and anxiety disorders; finding that adult Singaporeans have a 5.6% risk of developing depression and a 3.4% risk of developing anxiety in their lifetime. The report was given due credence and lead to the National Mental Health Blueprint, a five year plan, being developed by the Ministry of Health in 2007.
This new study is more comprehensive, looking at screening for a range of disorders, including more social manifestations such as gambling addiction and nicotine dependence.