NIMHANS to organise ‘Mental Health Santhe’ in Bengaluru on November 3

Various stakeholders working in the area of mental health and suicide prevention will attend at this unique event

November 01, 2022 08:59 pm | Updated 08:59 pm IST - Bengaluru

NIMHANS in Bengaluru

NIMHANS in Bengaluru

To bridge the gap of mental health needs of the community, increase knowledge of the services available from diverse organisations, reduce stigma and enhance mental health literacy among the population, NIMHANS will organise a ‘Mental Health Santhe’, a one of a kind mega fair on November 3.

Various stakeholders working in the area of mental health and suicide prevention will attend at this unique event to promote positive mental health and encourage public action. To be held at the Convention Centre at NIMHANS from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., the santhe is open to the general public.

Giving details about the event, NIMHANS Director Pratima Murthy said mental health is one of the most neglected areas of health. “In a developing country like India, mental health literacy appears to be an underrepresented domain and, as a consequence, professional help seeking attitude towards mental health problems poses a great challenge, according to the National Mental Health Survey 2015-2016,” she said.

“Mental health and physical health are closely related and mental health is an important component of holistic health. A recent study reveals that 11% of Indians over the age of 18 with psychiatric problems do not receive the required professional treatment. Lack of mental health literacy and social stigma form major barriers in accessing appropriate treatment for mental disorders,” she pointed out.

Asserting that there is enough research evidence to show that mental health education programmes can improve knowledge and help-seeking behaviour, the director said: “Building partnerships with community and grassroots level organisations working in the area of mental health can be beneficial for exchange of knowledge and skills vital for enhancing mental health literacy and reducing the stigma.”

The santhe will be inaugurated by S. Kalyanasundaram, Senior Consultant Psychiatrist and Honorary Advisor, Richmond Fellowship Society, Bengaluru Branch in the presence of Dr. Pratima Murthy and B.S. Shankaranarayana Rao, Registrar, NIMHANS.

Prominent mental health organizations and community partners including Step One, Marga Healing Minds, Medico Pastoral Association, Save India Family Foundation, Destigmatize, Manasa Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Association for the Mentally Challenged, Richmond Fellowship (Aasha Half Way Home), Suicide Prevention India Foundation (SPIF) and Friends of NIMHANS will participate. The event, with as many as 40 stalls, will also feature games and other interactive activities to make learning engaging and fun.

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