Meghalaya govt announces first-ever ‘Mental Health and Social Care Policy’

shilling: The Meghalaya government on Monday announced the state’s first-ever draft “national policy on mental health and social care” to mark World Mental Health Day.

The policy aims to promote general mental health and well-being and facilitate appropriate pathways of access and care for common and serious mental health problems.

The draft guidelines are being made available to the general public for information and are available at and for a period of time of 15 days.

The draft mental health policy is the result of extensive research, situational analysis in the context of the state and focused group discussions conducted by the key stakeholders involved in the drafting process.

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The draft policy was made publicly available for everyone’s information and also to locate some key missing elements, if any, in the policy document.

Civil society members were invited to send their comments on the draft policy to [email protected]

These proposals will then be reviewed prior to the formal launch of the final Meghalaya Mental Health and Social Care Policy.

Meghalaya Health Minister James PK Sangma, while formally announcing the draft policy, said that universal access to mental health care is an important goal of the state government, adding that by announcing this draft, the state had reached an important milestone in the health sector Politics.

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He also said Meghalaya was the first state in the Northeast to issue its own mental health policy.

“Mental health remains a taboo subject and continues to be largely neglected due to the stigma associated with it. And over the past three years, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, mental health has gradually turned into a silent pandemic that lurked for each of us and manifested itself in various forms. This created an urgency to have a specific policy to address the issues related to mental health,” he said at the event.

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The minister further informed that the core committee and sub-committee were formed to guide the process of elaborating state mental health policy so that it is well suited to addressing the problems existing in our state.

“We partnered with multiple stakeholders and, through a problem-driven iterative adaptive (PDIA) approach, within the State Capability Enhancement framework, engaged all affected departments and agencies as part of our joint proposal for problem identification and resolution,” he said.

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