The Centre has finally allocated a grant of Rs 30 crore to the Maharashtra Institute of Mental Health (MIMH) for creating 16 teaching posts and introducing new courses to generate manpower. The state government has also allocated Rs 1.5 crore to the Regional Mental Hospital,Yerawada,for patients rehabilitation in a bid to tackle the increasing burden of mental disorders.
MIMH director and in-charge of the department of psychiatry at BJ Medical College Dr Alka Pawar said the proposal for creating new teaching posts was submitted a few years ago. The Centre had earlier designated MIMH as a centre of excellence in mental health and subsequently sanctioned a grant for setting up institutes and training centres at Yerawada and Pashan. We have received the amount and this will lead to creation of 16 new teaching posts, Pawar said.
She said while the norms prescribe one nurse for three patients in a teaching hospital and one for five patients in a non-teaching hospital,the present situation is dismal with barely one nurse for 1,200 patients. In case of doctors,the present ratio is one for 600 patients while norms stipulate one for ten patients. While there should be one clinical psychologist for 25 patients,there is one per 900 patients.
Pawar said the construction of institutes and training centres at Yerawada and Pashan would commence soon besides introducing new courses like MPhil in clinical psychology,MPhil in psychiatric social work and MSc in clinical psychiatric nursing. The MIMH now conducts year-long certificate courses in counselling,rehabilitation and psychiatric nursing while the department of psychiatry conducts an MD course in psychiatry and diploma in psychiatric medicine. We will be able to slowly generate more manpower with the go-ahead for introduction of new courses, she said.
Dr Vilas Bhailume,medical superintendent of Regional Mental Hospital,Yerawada,said the state government had sanctioned Rs 1.5 crore for rehabilitation of patients. Over 300 of our 1,800 patients are staying with us for long,whose families refuse to accept them. We have planned several activities for them like training in computers,making of paper plates,painting and the like. The project will start next month, he said.