New Delhi, 29 March 2022: As per the National Mental Health Survey 2016, conducted by National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences, Bengaluru in 12 States of the country, the prevalence of depressive disorders among adults (18+ years) in India is estimated to be 2.7%. As per the survey, mental health problems are both a cause and consequence of several disorders, non-communicable diseases, addiction problems, injury and violence, social problems and are linked to social determinants of health.

For providing affordable and accessible mental healthcare facilities to the population, the Government is implementing the National Mental Health Programme (NMHP) in the country.  The District Mental Health Programme (DMHP) component of the NMHP has been sanctioned for implementation in 704 districts for which support is provided to States/UTs through the National Health Mission.  Facilities made available under DMHP at the Community Health Centre (CHC) and Primary Health Centre (PHC) levels, include outpatient services, assessment, counselling/ psycho-social interventions, care and support to persons with severe mental disorders, drugs, outreach services, ambulance services etc. In addition to above services there is a provision of 10 bedded in-patient facility at the district level.

To generate awareness among masses about mental illnesses Information, Education and Communication (IEC) activities are an integral part of the NMHP. At the District level, sufficient funds are provided to Districts under the DMHP under the Non-communicable Diseases flexi-pool of National Health Mission for IEC and awareness generation activities in the community, schools, workplaces, with community involvement. Under the DMHP various IEC activities such as awareness messages in local newspapers and radio, street plays, wall paintings etc. are undertaken by the States/UTs.

Besides the above, the Government has announced a “National Tele Mental Health Programme” in the Budget of 2022-23, to further improve access to quality mental health counselling and care services in the country.

The Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, Dr. Bharti Pravin Pawar stated this in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.