Indian Journal of PsychiatryIndian Journal of Psychiatry
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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 61  |  Issue : 10  |  Page : 650-659

Cost estimation for the implementation of the Mental Healthcare Act 2017


1 Department of Psychiatry, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Psychiatry, Spandana Health Care, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Prof. Suresh Bada Math
In-charge Head, Community Psychiatry and Telemedicine, Department of Psychiatry, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bengaluru - 560 029, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/psychiatry.IndianJPsychiatry_188_19

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The Mental Healthcare Act, 2017 (MHCA) was a step that was essential, once the Government of India ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2007. The MHCA looks to protect, promote, and fulfill the rights of persons with mental illness (PMI) as stated in the preamble of the Act. Further, there is an onus on the state to provide affordable mental health care to its citizens. In India, mental health has always been a lesser priority for lawmakers and citizens alike. The rights-based MHCA looks to overhaul the existing system by giving prominence to autonomy, protecting the rights of the mentally ill individuals, and making the State responsible for the care. The decision to make all this happen is commendable. The annual health expenditure of India is 1.15% of the gross domestic product, and the mental health budget is <1% of India's total health budget. This article systematically analyses and describes the cost estimation of the implementation of MHCA 2017, and it is not an estimation of mental health economics. The conservative annual estimated cost on the government to implement MHCA, 2017 would be 94,073 crore rupees. The present study estimation depicts that investing in the implementation of MHCA, 2017 by the government will yield 6.5 times the return on investment analysis benefit. If the State is not proactive in taking measures to implement the MHCA, the rights promised under this legislation will remain aspirational.



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