KOCHI: Though Kerala brags about a a slew of mental healthcare initiatives and programmes, a large gap remains unaddressed still. The Mental Health Care Act 2017, which makes mental healthcare the legal right of the population, is yet to be implemented in the state. According to a recent survey, around 12.8% of Malayalis suffer from psychiatric issues that require medical intervention while 15% is under treatment.
Given the deteriorating mental health situation in the state after the pandemic struck, experts are calling for immediate scaling up of resources. Dr Kavitha P of NIMHANS, Bengaluru, who is also the state coordinator of Kaval (a state programme that manages psychosocial rehabilitation of children in conflict with law), opines there is a dearth of specialised experts in the field of child psychiatry in the state.