Indian Journal of PsychiatryIndian Journal of Psychiatry
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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 61  |  Issue : 10  |  Page : 763-767

Implications of Mental Healthcare Act 2017 for geriatric mental health care delivery: A critical appraisal


1 Department of Psychiatry, Geriatric Clinic and Services, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Psychiatric Social Work, Geriatric Clinic and Services, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
3 Department of Psychiatry, Forensic Psychiatry Services, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Vijaykumar Harbishettar
Department of Psychiatry, Geriatric Clinic and Services, 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_100_19

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The prevalence of mental health problems in older adults is increasing globally as well as in India due to population ageing. Mental Healthcare Act (MHCA) 2017 has a rights-based approach and came into force in India in May 2018. Its provisions have significant implications for promoting mental health care and protecting the rights of persons with mental illness (PMI). Older adults with mental health problems such as dementia have a high risk for loss of mental capacity, abuse, violation of their rights, and institutionalization. This act advocates the development of specialized clinical services for the older adults in mental health care institutions. It also recognizes the rights of PMI to access a range of services required, including rehabilitation services. Several provisions of the act, such as those related to mental capacity, advance directive, nominated representative, and responsibilities of other agencies, have specific challenges related to older adults with mental illness. In this article, we present a critical appraisal of the implications of MHCA 2017 in the context of the care of the older adults with mental illness.



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