The Mental Healthcare Bill — approved in the Lok Sabha last week following Rajya Sabha approval in August 2016 — marks a paradigm shift in the care and treatment of persons with mental illness in India. Instead of viewing persons with mental illness as objects of fear, pity and charity, the new Bill recognises them as citizens with health rights, including the right to quality mental health care. The formality of Presidential assent will make it the law of the land and repeal the existing Mental Health Act, 1987.
There are important lessons from the process of its drafting as well as its contents. The Bill underwent wide public consultations from 2010. These include regional consultations and a national consultation attended by nearly 300 stakeholders..................Read more
Source: The Hindu