Purpose: Sustaining mental health services in rural India
is increasingly difficult. The major impediments to improve
mental health services in rural and remote areas in India are
the maldistribution of the resources, limited access to appropriate
and timely services, training of health workers,
burnout in workers and the financial cost of dealing with
crisis over prevention. We describe the progress made in the
Nitte Rural Psychiatric Project and the ongoing challenges
that confront us. This poster would describe an experiential
account of our experience in Nitte Rural Project wherein a
valuable aspect of rural experience is being a part of rural
community and having a ‘sense of community’.
Material and method: A qualitative study describing
the unique heartening experience of medical professionals
receiving a high level of respect in these
communities and the flip side of a close-knit community
where once you are part of it, it can become pervasive.
Attending social and community events can be an important
way to get to know the local people and gain their
respect and trust so invariably professional life intrudes
into personal time.
Results: Apart from isolation from peers, demands on
families (efforts to cope with relocation) and long term
unsustainability are some of the pressing concerns.
Conclusion: Unmet needs of large groups of rural
communities are being deprived of minimum availability
of mental health care, lack of affordability and accessibility
of services resulting in maintenance of stigma and
various social issues are highlighted.