On Wednesday, a nationwide conference will be held by the Nationwide Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to discuss the steps the government has done to address the issues with the mental healthcare systems and to increase awareness of the need to remove the stigma associated with mental health.
The Union Minister of State for Health Bharati Praveen Pawar will be the chief guest at the NHRC conference on “Moving Mental Health Beyond Institutions,” officials said on Tuesday. The meeting will take place at Vigyan Bhawan.
Participation and Purpose of the Conference
The meeting will also include participation from district session judges, state health secretaries and commissioners, directors of all state mental health facilities, professionals in the mental health field, subject matter experts, academics, and members of civil society. According to a statement from the NHRC, the government has taken steps to resolve the issues with the mental healthcare systems and will discuss them in this conference. The purpose of the conference is also to identify further actions required for the more effective implementation of the “Mental Healthcare Act, 2017.” The conference also intends to dispel the stigma associated with mental health, according to its announcement.
About Mental Health Act, 2017
The Indian government approved The Mental Health Care Act 2017 on April 7, 2017, and it became effective on May 29, 2018. In accordance with nationally and internationally accepted medical standards, including the most recent edition of the World Health Organization’s International Classification of Diseases as may be notified,” the Mental Health Act of 2017 mandates diagnosing mental illness. The Act further states that no person or authority shall categorise a person as having a mental disease unless such classification is directly related to the treatment of the illness.
Duties performed by the Commission
According to the statement, the Supreme Court ordered the NHRC to monitor the mental hospitals in Gwalior, Agra, and both hospitals in Ranchi as part of a public interest case and to periodically provide these institutions with the required instructions.
The Commission engaged with numerous stakeholders and broadened the scope of its monitoring to include additional national mental healthcare facilities in order to recommend improvements to the government. According to the Commission, it has been concentrating on enhancing the nation’s healthcare systems.
The Commission recently paid visits to hospitals and mental health facilities in Gwalior, Agra, and Ranchi. According to officials, the Commission sent out one of its Special Rapporteurs to visit each of the 47 mental healthcare facilities spread across several states after learning about the situation in these facilities.
The ‘Status of Implementation of the Mental Healthcare Act, 2017’ in the nation and the associated difficulties were the subject of their research, which led to a thorough report. The release of this report will take place during the conference, the commission stated.
Release of a new book
Mental Health Concern for All: In Context of the Mental Healthcare Act, 2017′, a book that the Commission has also worked on, will also be published on this occasion, according to officials.
“The book makes an effort to include key facets of mental health, including, among others, the mental health of children, women, the elderly, LGBTQIA+, prisoners, and disaster and mental health. It was stated that the book serves as a reference guide by providing details regarding mental health laws and regulations in India.
Core upcoming discussions:
Other than the opening and closing sessions, the conference’s discussions will center on the following four themes:
1. Difficulties in implementing the Mental Healthcare Act of 2017
2. Infrastructure and human resource issues for mental health institutions,
3. Rights of people with mental illness,
4. Including reintegration, rehabilitation, empowerment, and most recent developments in critical mental health care, From an international perspective and the way forward.