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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Panel established to inform gov’t policy on drug abuse, mental health meets for first time


The Scientific Advisory Committee of the Mental Health and Addiction Observatory of Puerto Rico will be in charge of developing a strategic plan focused on public policy for preventing substance abuse and promoting mental health on the island.

By The Star Staff


Dr. Carlos Rodríguez Mateo, head of the Mental Health and Anti-Addiction Services Administration (ASSMCA by its Spanish initials), announced on Tuesday the establishment of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Mental Health and Addiction Observatory of Puerto Rico (OSMAPR), which will be in charge of developing a strategic plan focused on preventing substance abuse and promoting mental health among the population, as established in the public policy of Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia.


Rodríguez Mateo noted that the Scientific Advisory Committee was created under Law No. 36 of Aug. 27, 2021, which orders the ASSMCA to create the OSMAPR. The observatory has the mission of collecting and presenting statistical information at the state, regional and municipal levels, with the purpose of promoting informed decision-making for the development of health public policy.


The announcement was made at the conclusion of the first meeting of the members of the committee where, among other topics, the role of each member was discussed, along with the projections of the strategic work plan, as framed by the aforementioned law.


“With this initiative we take another important step on public policy focused on prevention and multisectoral work, from a health perspective, to meet the needs of our communities, and that have an impact on both the mental and physical health of people, as well as the social and economic development of Puerto Rico,” Rodríguez Mateo said. “Through this observatory we are seeing demographically what the trends in addictions are.”

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