Mental health is a neglected area within the healthcare systems in developing nations, including Sri Lanka. However, the rapid population aging and the resulting rise in psychological issues among the elderly are becoming major concerns within the country. Therefore, a proper assessment of distribution of mental healthcare facilities within the country is much needed in reducing the unmet need among people with psychological symptoms. In this study, the distribution of mental health services within the district of Colombo, which is the capital of the country, was assessed.
With this view, mapping of mental healthcare services within the district of Colombo was carried out using the Geographic Information System to assess service and human resource availability and physical accessibility to the elderly within the district.
Certain deficiencies in availability and accessibility of the services were identified which were more significant toward eastern parts of the district.
Establishment of new mental healthcare facilities as well as upgrading of already available centres while ensuring availability of professional human resources to these centres is a timely need.