GUWAHATI, May 10 - Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the State health and family welfare (H&FW) department has come up with an action plan and a standard operating procedure (SOP) to provide mental health support to the common public.
The action plan and SOP on the management of mental health issues during COVID-19 pandemic outbreak in Assam were prepared by a committee of experts headed by the head of the Psychiatry department of the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) Dr Suresh Chakravarty.
An order issued by the H&FW department cited that the action plan and the SOP will be implemented under the aegis of National Mental Health Programme (NMHP), Assam.
For this purpose, the department partially attached two faculty members of the Psychiatry department of GMCH � Dr Shyamanta Das and Dr Mythili Hazarika � to the NMHP cell under the National Health Mission, Assam, temporarily.
Dr Das will look after all the matters related to pharmacological treatment including training, referral, telemedicine, etc., and Dr Hazarika will look after all matters related to psychological support including training, tele-counselling, etc.
Moreover, Dr N Lalsim, additional director of health services, has been entrusted to coordinate among all the stakeholders to address the mental health concerns of the general public and the needs of those with psychiatric illness in a proper way.