New mental health facility in town



MASERU – The profound fascination with comprehending human behaviour and emotions, coupled with an unwavering commitment to effect positive change in individuals’ lives and prevent mental illness, has propelled Libuseng Rathobei to establish Eagloo Ment Care. The gratifying experience of assisting others in overcoming obstacles and attaining mental well-being further fueled her endeavour. The name “Eagloo” derives its essence from the strength, resilience, and courage embodied by eagles.

Rathobei explains: “In our mental health company, the name ‘Eagle’ conveys a powerful message of empowerment, serving as a constant reminder to clients of their innate strength and capacity to surmount challenges.” The symbolism of the eagle plays a pivotal role in defining the company’s spirit. Rathobei adds: “Eagles possess sharp eyesight, capable of discerning things from great distances. In the context of our company, the ‘Eagle’ symbolises the attainment of clarity, insight, and perspective concerning one’s thoughts, emotions, and life circumstances—essential elements in preventing mental illness.”

She emphasises how the natural instincts of eagles influence the guiding principles of her company. The company also draws inspiration from the eagle’s attributes of freedom, transformation, protection, and guidance. Eagloo Ment commenced operations in October 2023 and secured funding from the NUL Innovation Hub under the Competitiveness and Financial Inclusion project. Presently, the company is situated within the National University of Lesotho (NUL) campus, incubated by the Innovation Hub.

“Mental health is the cornerstone of overall well-being. Many individuals are unaware that the ailments they bring to the doctor or clinic often indicate underlying issues of poor or neglected mental health. Eagloo Ment Care was established to provide a space where individuals can receive compassionate and expert care, fostering a community dedicated to mental wellness,” says Rathobei.

She holds a Master’s Degree in Mental Health and Psychiatry and is a Ph.D. candidate with extensive experience in counseling. Her company has assembled a multidisciplinary team, including a qualified psychiatric nurse, social worker, clinical psychologist, forensic psychologist, nutritionist, financial and business expert, and psychiatrist, all contributing to the comprehensive and holistic care provided by the company.

Eagloo Ment Care specialises in acute services, addressing conditions such as major depressive disorders, bipolar disorders, acute psychotic episodes, acute stress reactions (death of a loved one), acute anxiety disorder, substance-induced disorders, acute suicidal crises, and acute psychiatric emergencies.

This serves as the initial point of contact for individuals undergoing acute mental health crises or exhibiting symptoms. Additionally, the company offers preventive care services, including capacity building on mental health through workshops, motivational speaking with organisations, and mental health education and support programmes in schools.

“If rehabilitative services are deemed necessary, clients may be referred to Mohlomi Hospital or other institutions tailored to their specific conditions,” says Rathobei. Eagloo Ment Care is committed to establishing a therapeutic therapist-client relationship founded on confidentiality, privacy, respect, trust, empathy, congruence, and a non-judgmental approach.

These services encompass counselling and therapy sessions, medication management, and life skills training. The comprehensive approach addresses various aspects of an individual’s mental health and well-being across different age groups, including children, adolescents, adults, and the elderly. In contrast, Mohlomi Hospital specialises in providing rehabilitative services for its clients.

After discharge from the mental health hospital, individuals have the option to receive continued aftercare support from the mental health company, aiding their transition back into their communities and the maintenance of mental health stability.

This aftercare support may encompass follow-up appointments, medication monitoring, and access to community resources. In the five months of operation, Rathobei and her team have successfully assisted 18 individuals, four families, and 13 companies. The Eagloo team is committed to providing clients with the best mental health facility experience, offering a comprehensive range of services. Client consultations involve thorough assessments, including history taking, mental state examination, cranial nerve examination, and physical examination.

Crisis intervention services are available for individuals experiencing acute psychiatric symptoms, emotional distress, or suicidal ideation or thoughts. This intervention includes immediate support, stabilisation, and safety planning. In addition, the company offers short-term psychotherapy or counselling to help individuals cope with acute mental health challenges, develop coping skills, and address underlying issues contributing to their symptoms.

This includes individual and family counselling, group therapy, life skills training and coaching, and capacity building. The Eagloo team is dedicated to providing holistic and personalised care to support individuals in their mental health journey. Additionally, the company provides child and adolescent services, offering assessments and mental health treatment for children under the age of 13 or adolescents facing severe emotional, behavioural, and relationship difficulties.

Furthermore, Eagloo Ment Care offers 24-hour services, allowing clients to reach them telephonically. They utilise video therapy for clients and provide follow-up services on their condition. Intensive online outreach mental health services cater to adolescents showing substantial and prolonged psychological disturbance, addressing complex needs that may involve challenging, at-risk, and suicidal behaviours.

The company also implements school-based early intervention programmes, specifically conduct disorder programmes, aiming to offer early intervention and prevention services to reduce the prevalence and impact of conduct disorder. Rathobei acknowledges challenges, such as financial constraints limiting the capacity to admit patients and difficulties in advertising due to a lack of awareness.

She expresses plans for patient admission in the future and notes the ongoing efforts to increase visibility through social media platforms. Looking ahead, Rathobei envisions Eagloo expanding its reach in the next three to five years, aspiring to become a recognised mental wellness haven. The company aims to collaborate with like-minded organisations to create a positive impact on a larger scale. She adds: “Witnessing the positive transformations in individuals’ lives and being a part of their journey towards mental well-being fuels our passion and excitement every day.”

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