A 3-day conference 'Building Partnership in Community Mental Health' has been organized in New Delhi. Over 6% Indians suffer from mental disorders and therefore there is need to develop multinational partnerships to address this problem, pointed out India's Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad. The conference will highlight the best practices of partnerships among network countries and also aim at developing a set of common principles of partnerships in community mental health.
In India about 15million people suffer from serious psychiatric problems while about 30 million are affected by mild to moderate psychiatric illness. These statistics are based on the the National Family Health survey in India. According to World Health Organization (WHO), almost half of the world's 450 million mentally ill people are located in the Asia-Pacific region. The WHO has stated that by 2030 mental disorders like schizophrenia, mood disorders, substance abuse and dementia will be one of the leading causes of the global disease burden than cancer or cardiovascular disease.
AdvertisementWhile addressing the conference Mr. Azad said, "Unfortunately there is still stigma attached towards people with mental illness and epilepsy within society. Public education and efforts to change the attitude of the general population towards persons with mental illness and epilepsy need to be carried out. We recognize that mental health is a neglected area where awareness is low even among the health professionals. In recent years, we have given a lot of attention to the issue of mental health in India and have increased the allocation of resources for the program more than six times for our current five year plan."