CPIM urges govt to take steps to address mental health crisis
Keeping in mind the recent suicide by a Covid-19 patient at a Shimla hospital, Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPIM) has urged the state government to take steps to cope up mental health crisis in state.
In a memorandum submitted to state health minister Rajiv Saizal, CPIM said that job loss, prolonged isolation, increase in domestic violence, fear and consequence of contracting the infection, and uncertainty regarding vaccine has led to upsurge in mental health issues ranging from distress, depression, anxiety and in some cases, deaths due to suicide.
Population most affected include those already facing mental health issues, people who have recovered from covid, frontline healthcare workers, youth, physically challenged, women, workers of unorganised sector and the elderly.
CPIM state secretariat member Kuldip Singh Tanwar said without proper physiological support at hospitals and covid care centres patients, attendants, non-covid patients and healthcare workers are becoming victim of stress and anxiety.
“Resultant anger and anguish is being directed towards overworked, stressed and burned-out healthcare workers. Given that this situation is likely to persist in the near future, immediate actions need to be taken,” he said.
The party also placed some suggestions and proposals before the government. CPIM urges government to deploy mental health specialists and counsellors in isolation, quarantine and covid care centres to ensure good mental health of people put under isolation and quarantine along with heathcare workers and attendants, said Tanwar.
“Psycho-social support teams should be formed in all 12 districts,” he said. He stressed on strengthening mental health care system by appointing psychiatrists, psychiatric social workers, clinical psychologists, social workers and counsellors on short-term basis and organise training and capacity building.
“Undertake statewide awareness campaigns to cope with stress, depression and suicide ideation by involving different departments including education, women and child development, and social and voluntary organisations,” Tanwar said.