Mental health goes for a toss in Mumbai after the civic and state-run hospitals fail to provide treatment

Amid the ongoing pandemic, the mental health of people went for a toss across the city after the civic and state-run hospitals failed to provide mental health treatment to patients as the psychiatric ward was completely shut.

Almost seven months after some of the hospitals have now started admitting patients with mental disorders, however Dr RN Cooper Municipal General Hospital is still refusing to admit patients with mental illness, which is leading to harassment of patients in the ongoing pandemic.

Senior doctors from the Cooper hospital said the psychiatric ward of the hospital is closed since the pandemic. Many patients have been affected. They had to run from pillar to post to get themselves admitted and start mental health treatment.

“Considering the mental health of the patients we spoke to the administration of the hospitals to start the psychiatric ward, but still no steps have been taken.

“However, all other wards have been started except the psychiatric ward,” he said.

On a daily basis, more than 100 patients are visiting the psychiatric Outpatient Department (OPD) but they are not being admitted in the ward.

“Patients with mental disorders need to be admitted as the patients with suicidal intentions and depression who can even cause harm to others. They need immediate hospitalisation. Despite this, we can’t admit them,” doctor added.

Other than Cooper Hospital, the psychiatry department was closed for almost nine months since the outbreak of the pandemic.

As per sources, the government-run JJ hospital has started the admission of psychiatric patients from the first week of December.

While at the King Edward Memorial (KEM) hospital, Parel is admitting psychiatric patients partially.

According to a study conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 130 countries, 67% of the surveyed people reported disruptions in counselling and psychotherapy.

More than a third (35%) reported disruptions to emergency interventions, including those for people experiencing prolonged seizures; severe substance use withdrawal syndromes; and delirium,

often a sign of a serious underlying medical condition. This is as per the official website of the WHO.

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