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NIMHANS GUIDELINES ON MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES OF PRISONERS AND PRISON STAFF

NIMHANS GUIDELINES ON MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES OF PRISONERS AND PRISON STAFF

Context:

Following up on the solicitation of the Ministry of Home Affairs, NIMHANS, an Institute of National Importance, issued a set of guidelines on the management of mental health issues of the prisoners and prison staff.

NIMHANS Guidelines:

  1. Gatekeeper Model for Identification of Mental Illness:
  • In this model, chosen detainees, prepared to recognize detainees in danger of suicide, would allude them to treatment or supportive services.
  • It is a stage to forestall suicides set off by emotional well-being issues in prisons across the nation.
  • There is pervasiveness of mental illness and substance use disorder in about 80% of the prison population.
  1. For Mental Health Treatment:
  • Prisoners with mental issues must be routinely evaluated for seriousness of suicidal risk and also furthermore put on normal and directed medicine.
  • To address the prisoner’s mental health needs, the correctional facility ought to have links to community-based initiatives like the District Mental Health Programme.
  1. Buddy System for Social Intervention:
  • It is a kind of social support through trained prisoners called “buddies” or “listeners”.
  • It was found to have a good impact on the well-being of suicidal prisoners.
  • Intermittent phone discussions with loved ones would likewise encourage support.
  • e-Mulakat is an online platform enabling relatives/friends/ advocates of prisoners to book prior appointments for interviewing prisoners through the National Prisons Information Portal.

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