NEW DELHI : Delhi's Health Minister, Mr Satyendar Jain, has said that apart from the homeless people on the streets, clinical data of hospital and community outreach clinics indicates that there are several thousand persons with mental illnesses living in families who are brought to hospital for treatment and care.
The minister was speaking at a National Seminar for Homeless and other Unreached Persons with Mental Illness, organized by the Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS) in Delhi on January 5, 2019.
The minister said that health intervention is more striking for those with severe mental illnesses who are homeless or living with families, considering the illness related difficulties in help seeking, at times even active resistance to treatment and dilemmas related to involuntary treatment.
Saying that it has been the utmost area of concern, he pointed out to doctors the need for bridging the treatment gap for these people. Satyender Jain also suggested that excessive playing of video games is not a healthy sign, and citizens should go out in the open and play outdoor games to stay fit.
Prof Nimesh G Desai, Director-IHBAS, said, “A good amount and quality of work is being carried out by IHBAS for people with mental illnesses living in families, wherein comprehensive services are being provided to the persons with mental illnesses in homeless situations.”
He said, “There is a lack of comprehensive approach towards treatment and care of persons in homeless situations.”
National Mental Health Policy envisages the reduction of distress, disability and exclusion morbidity for people with mental illness. It also mentions availability of universal mental health care and increasing access to mental health services for underprivileged population.