India is set to usher in a new era of mental health care, which is expected to improve access to services, especially in rural areas, according to a report.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), mental health has been the country’s major problem for decades and the report on mental health in India released by the World Bank on Monday said that India has seen an increase in cases of depression and anxiety.
“India is set for a new phase of mental and physical health care in the coming years,” said Dr Gopal Jain, chief executive of the World Population Fund (WFP).
“It is the largest and most populous country in the world and has one of the highest rates of obesity and diabetes.
It also has a large burden of under-diagnosis of mental disorders, particularly in rural India, where about 60 percent of people live on less than $1.25 a day,” Dr Jain said.”
We are seeing a resurgence in mental health and wellbeing in India.
The world is catching up to India.
We need to keep up with this progress and bring mental health back to the forefront of our lives,” he said.
The report said India was also one of only two countries in the developed world to have an overall mental health deficit.
“The health of people in India has improved markedly since the 1960s and has surpassed that of countries in Western Europe, North America and Asia,” said the report.
The WHO report also said India’s health system has been among the most progressive in the western world.
“There has been an unprecedented increase in the use of electronic health records, which have allowed patients to monitor their health,” said Professor Keshav Prasad, chief health officer of the WHO.
“In some rural areas where people do not have access to healthcare, they have access through a health care provider,” Dr Prasat added.
Dr Prasal added that India’s healthcare system was working towards being “a model of care that people in developing countries can aspire to”.
“India has a lot of good health care systems in the country and is working towards creating a better system for the world,” he added.