Join hands to tackle psycho–social problems: Prof Talat to stakeholders
‘Valley has huge chunk of PTSD patients’
Srinagar, Oct 12: Kashmir University Vice-Chancellor, Prof Talat Ahmad today asked all the stake holders to join hands to tackle psycho–social problems and to strengthen support system for the affected.
Addressing a seminar ‘Mental Health and Media’ organised by Media Education and Research Centre (MERC) in association with an ActionAid India, in connection with the Mental Health Week, Prof Talat Ahmad said, “There can be no health without mental health”. “The topic has relevance in Kashmir because the people in valley have faced many difficulties during the last two decades.”
Prof Talat was all praise for the Kashmir University TV digest produced by EMMRC, and congratulated them for the recent award for their film on global warming. VC asked the MERC faculty to pay attention to research in media which he said would help produce leaders in media.
MERC Head of the Department, Dr. Shahid Rasool highlighted the effects of media on issues concerning mental health. “Issues concerning mental health are considered a taboo in our society and media has a greater responsibility to help people shun these,” he said. “Coverage of violence by the media has an impact on the mental growth of teenagers,” he said, while citing some studies done on the subject.
About the seminar objectives, Dr Shahid said the idea was to equip and sensitize the students about the sensitivities associated with reporting issues concerning mental health.
MERC senior faculty, Nasir Mirza presented details about the mental health scenario in the valley. ‘The issue demands more sensitive media response “, he observed.
Highlighting the importance of intervention of NGOs in dealing with psychological issues, Prof Madhosh stressed on the need to educate society at large about psychological disorders. “Society needs to give due care to the younger generation in psycho-social area and should be educated psychologically”, he added.
MERC senior faculty, Dr Sabeha Mufti presented vote of thanks.
During the technical session presentations were made by Prof A G Madhosh, Dr Arshad Hussain, Dr Sheikh Showkat Hussain besides Nasir Mirza.
They covered psycho–social, psychiatric, legal and communication aspects of the theme respectively.
Putting forth “Changing perspective of our society post 1990” as the primary reason for increase in patients suffering from mental illness in Kashmir, leading psychiatrist of the valley, Dr. Arshad Hussain said, “We have a huge chunk of population suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and anxiety related disorders.”
Citing statistics, Dr. Arshad revealed that lesser number of people suffering from mental ailments visited hospitals during pre-1990, but the number afterwards increased to a great extent. He said, “The number of patients increased manifold post 1990 period.”
Nasir Mirza also stressed on the need of rewriting the grammar of writing in journalism in the context of reporting mental health issues. He described mental illness as ‘disability’, and called on the journalists to take due care while writing about such patients. He also referred to the various terms used in different countries for such persons. Mirza delved on the issues to consider while reporting suicides, underlining the need to contextualise stories about mental healthcare.
He also referred to the role of religion more as preventive measure than a cure. Mirza said the tendency to look at every problem as a ‘communication problem’ does not serve the purpose as far as mental healthcare is concerned.
Prof Sheikh Showkat Hussain talked about Mental Health Act. He said in J&K, mentally retarded persons were the easiest victims of crimes done to grab the property. “Section 84 of the Indian constitution clearly deals with the rights of such people he said.
Project Manager of ActionAid talked about the socio-psycho issues in the society due to the prevalent situation in the valley. “Lack of awareness worsens psycho-social problems,” he added while referring to Action Aid initiatives aimed at building community based resilience and providing psycho social support to the affected people due to the prevailing situation in Kashmir valley.
Lastupdate on : Tue, 11 Oct 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Tue, 11 Oct 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Wed, 12 Oct 2011 00:00:00 IST
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