Mind the Gap - Bridging the Enormous Deficit of Mental Health in India

Building Institutions | Mar, 2017

Besides a severe shortage of mental health professionals, scarce infrastructure, poor quality services, lack of awareness, dearth of research to build and scale programs, and limited funding all contribute to India’s growing mental health crisis. Dasra’s report Mind the Gap lays out the key challenges and priorities for action in the mental health space in India.

Individuals with mental disorders comprise a vulnerable group, subject to immense stigma and discrimination. They often experience high levels of physical and sexual abuse, encounter restrictions in the exercise of their political and civil rights, face significant barriers in attending school and finding employment, and are at increased risk of other illnesses. In Mind the Gap, key themes to improve the lives of millions living with mental illness in India are discussed. First, to integrate mental health into overall health systems and link solutions to other development priorities including housing, education, employment, and sports to enable full inclusion. Also to focus on inclusive, community-based mental healthcare, which has the potential to reduce stigma and human rights violations. Finally, to secure basic dignity and rights for people with mental illness, which would require legal review and advocacy to change outdated laws. 

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