Missing MH370: Next of kin getting restless and frustrated

Missing MH370: Next of kin getting restless and frustrated
A relative of a passenger of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 puts his palms together as he prays for his family member at the Lido Hotel in Beijing.

PUTRAJAYA, Malaysia - Next of kin of the passengers of missing Flight MH370 could be putting up a brave front, but may be facing inner turmoil with no conclusive updates forthcoming even after four days, according to psychiatrists and counsellors working with them.

Malaysia Public Service Depart­ment's psychology management director Dr Abd Halim Mohd Hussin said the 41 families under the care of Malaysia Airlines were growing restless and frustrated with the wait.

"We know the wait is painful and difficult, so our team from the Health and Women, Family and Community Development Ministry are doing our best to comfort them."

Perdana University Graduate School of Medicine Assoc Prof of Psychiatry Datuk Dr Andrew Mohanraj, who evaluated the counselling team, said he was satisfied with the "psychological first aid" rendered to the families.

"The counsellors are not asking probing questions which could cause psychological scarring in light of this catastrophic event.

"I am pleased to say that their approach has been supportive.

"But there is still a need to provide a credible and consistent stream of information to the families on the investigations, which is crucial for their mental state," said Dr Andrew, who also appealed to the media to be gentler when speaking to the families and not to adopt the "ambush style" of questioning.

Family members of five people who were on Flight MH370 have also sought counselling from the Welfare Department, said department director-general Datuk Noraini Mohd Hashim.

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