NHRC Seeks a Response on Retaining the Mentally Ill in Hospitals Post-Recovery


eMediNexus    27 January 2023

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has requested a six-week response from the chief secretaries of the states and union territories about the illegal hospital retention of patients who have been cured of mental illness. It also criticized the federal government and the states for the inadequate infrastructure and labor scarcity in mental health facilities and demanded a detailed report on a plan of action to address these issues, according to officials.


In a statement, the agency stated that all 46 government mental healthcare institutions are in horrible condition and show very poor treatment by different stakeholders. They added that this indicates the sad state of affairs, which amounts to a violation of the human rights of people with mental illnesses. The commission has requested data from all states and UTs on patients who were discharged in the previous five years, as well as on their recovery and ability to reunite with family or the community.


According to the NHRC, "the Union health and family welfare secretary and the director general of health services have to submit a report on the status of framing rules under the Mental Healthcare Act, 2017 as contemplated under Section 121 of the Act, as well as the establishment of the "central authority" as contemplated under Section 33 of the Act, and filling up vacancies of the central authority."


The directors general of police and police commissioners are required to submit reports regarding the status of complaints received or registered regarding mentally ill individuals, regarding non-rehabilitation or non-reintegration with families, and regarding measures taken or proposed to be taken to ensure that individuals with mental illness who have been treated live with their families and other community members. 


(Source: https://health.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/industry/why-are-mentally-ill-kept-in-hospitals-post-recovery-nhrc/97361214 )

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