Task Before Indian Psychiatry Today: Commentary

Mens Sana Monogr. Jan-Dec 2016;14(1):118-132. doi: 10.4103/0973-1229.193080.


In this commentary on the article, "The Task Before Psychiatry Today Redux: STSPIR," (Singh, 2014)[20], the author, while agreeing with most of the paper's findings, proposes a rather parallel judgment that intersects at the same paths ahead. There is a need for widespread and easily available essential mental health services in India. Health agenda must focus on spreading and scaling up psychiatric services. There is also a need to spread awareness of psychiatry and mental health and, as a psychiatrist, one must focus on making psychiatry available to a wider audience. Psychiatrists need to maintain a holistic view of psychiatric disorders while viewing them from both a neurobiological and psychosocial perspective. There is a need to revamp psychiatric training in departments with an increase in the thrust toward fostering translational research excellence in various spheres. Psychiatrists must continue to be trained in psychotherapy and practice it regularly. Psychiatric departments need to promote research excellence and focus on reducing brain drain. The practical applications of the tasks set out for psychiatry are more difficult than one can imagine, and a conscientious effort in that direction shall serve for its betterment. The future is bright and psychiatry must work toward making it brighter.

Keywords: Anti-psychiatry; Brain drain; Disaster psychiatry; Discrimination; Future of psychiatry; Health agenda; Integration of approaches; Psychiatric departments; Psychiatric patients; Psychiatry; Psychotherapy; Research excellence; Scale up services.