Mental health bill set to revolutionise care in India
The most important aspect of the new bill is the right to mental health care, which is particularly important in view of the huge burden of mental illness in the country and the inadequacy of the existing system to address the problem. There are provisions in the new bill for a range of treatment options, including outpatient and community services and half-way homes.
According to the new bill, every person (with or without a mental disorder) has the right to make an “advance directive”, which is essentially a written statement stating how they want to be treated when they’re not in a state to make appropriate decisions.
Two other important features of the bill are the decriminalisation of suicide and a ban on electroconvulsive therapy without anaesthesia.