Govt Launches 24*7 Helpline For Mental Health Issues; Web Portal Launched For Counselling
The ongoing pandemic is not only affecting physically but also immensely affecting individuals’ minds with the insecurities rising with the health and money concerns, relief is the need of the hour.
MiHOPE – Web Portal
A recent survey by HR and well-being firm The7thFold reveals that 36% of India Inc employees have reported that their mental health has worsened versus 17% for physical health.
According to the AIIMS psychiatry department’s head, community mobilisation is the need of the hour to tackle India’s growing mental health issues.
Reportedly, the portal will be available for public use from 10, October and can be used for online consultations.
The announcement of portal launch was made during the ongoing Mental Health Access Summit 2020, which is taking place between October 4 and 11.
The main focus of this summit is on structural barriers to accessing treatment for mental health problems such as lack of mental health professionals and inadequate recognition of mental healthcare.
KIRAN – Helpline
Prior to this, At the start of September, Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thawarchand Gehlot launched a 24×7 toll-free mental health rehabilitation helpline ‘KIRAN’ 1800-599-0019).
Basically, the helpline aims to provide the first line of counselling in response to the increasing mental health issues among people due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
They plan to offer mental health rehabilitation services including first-aid, early screening, psychological support, distress management, promoting positive behaviour and mental well-being, and psychological crisis management.
Further, they will be providing first stage counselling, advice and also refer patients with severe illnesses to counsellors, with a special focus on persons with disabilities.
How Would This Help?
The portal is expected to help people overcome their stress-related disorders and further in the prevention of emotional and mental health problems with the help of good diet, yoga, meditation and other changes in lifestyle.
“With the ongoing pandemic, we are witnessing a rise in mental health problems. Our observations suggest that there is an acute shortage of mental health professionals in the country and to overcome this problem we are launching KIRAN as a dedicated helpline providing rehabilitation services for patients with mental illness,” said Probodh Seth, the joint secretary at DEPwD, while talking about the need for mental health treatment.
The Kiran helpline was launched in hopes that people would feel encouraged to reach out for help.
“Due to the stigma around it, mental health patients do not feel comfortable seeking help. Keeping this in mind the identities of people calling the helpline will be kept anonymous,” said Seth.
Government is doing its part by providing different facilities(helpline, portal) for the betterment of mental health during the testing times of pandemic.
But still, seeking help for these kinds of mental issues still remains taboo in the country and there is an urgent need to spread more awareness in this segment.