Experts lament lack of psychosocial rehab centres in India

Photo for representational purpose only.

Photo for representational purpose only.  


It is a stumbling block to tackle patients with mental disabilities, they say

The lack of support and help for patients suffering from mental illnesses was highlighted at the international conference on psychosocial rehabilitation here on Thursday.

“There is a serious lack of psychosocial rehabilitation facilities in the country. Not even 2% of the necessary resources are available to patients with mental illness,” said V. K. Radhakrishnan, vice-president, World Association for Psychosocial Rehabilitation (WAPR).

Psychosocial rehabilitation centres focus on enabling speedy recovery of people with severe mental illnesses, and reintroducing them into society.

This process should ideally start from the first consultation when the patient is diagnosed and it ought to last after the therapy concludes.

S. Sacchidanand, Vice-Chancellor of Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences and chief guest for the event, said that the management of a psychiatric patient does not end with therapy.

“The patient has to be treated holistically and has to be reinstated into society,” he said.

The Mental Healthcare Act states that mental healthcare includes the treatment as well as care and rehabilitation of patients. However, rehabilitation centres fail to mark their presence in the county and the treatment is restricted to drug therapy alone, said experts.

Jayanthi C.R., Director and Dean of Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute (BMCRI), said that drug therapy was not the only answer.

“About 33% of patients do not respond to drug therapy. From 1990 onwards, there was a harbinger of change from drug therapy to psychosocial rehabilitation,” she said

The absence of availability, accessibility, and affordability of treatment is a stumbling block in the recovery path of the patients.

Ravi Shankar Rao, Editor, WAPR of the Indian chapter, said: “There is a gap between the need and provision of treatment in the country. Around 70% people in rural areas lack access to proper treatment.”

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Printable version | Jan 24, 2020 2:53:19 PM |

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