Mental Health Teleservice by NIMHANS Receives 12000 Calls in Three Months


Tele-Manas is a phone call service for mental health support and is receiving a good response. There have been various calls in the past three months, many of which are related to mental health issues like anxiety, depression, and sleep difficulties. Many people are, under stress that could be related to their work, home, or emotional problems as well. Tele manas is helping widen the scope of mental health care and also providing avenues where people can speak about their problems without the fear of Judgement.

The phone call service is ready to be set up in more than 25 states and union territories in India. Even though the facility is not up and ready at its full potential but all the states are working on it. When a caller uses the toon-manas system, a counsellor answers the phone. A person helps make sense of the patient by understanding their situation. Upon, the knowledge they decide whether they have to escalate the issue to a psychologist, psychiatrist, or a psychiatrist social worker for further assistance. Each state will have 10 such counselors, and their recruitment is taking place now. 

NIMHANS being the nodal center of this project has the largest base of tele-manas. Other states like Andaman and Nicobar Islands still have a problem with connectivity and the service is not active there. Earlier the service of tele consultation would take place through e-manas which was a portal on the Karnataka government’s website. Now it is being driven by phone calling services through this new project. IIIT Bangalore is helping set up this whole project by providing technical support. Now they are working towards providing a video calling option that would help the callers explain their problems more easily. Through video calling, the caller’s problems will be more easily understandable.

All the calls received majorly relate to emotional troubles and dealing with stress as well. A small portion of the calls speaks about angry outbursts as well as suicidal tendencies. The project seems successful and is helping many people. With the work continuing towards building it, in the future it seems possible for it to be a big network for providing mental care assistance throughout India.

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