Highlights of the Mental Health Bill (Act)

The Mental Health Bill was passed in the Lok Sabha on March 27th , 2017. The aim of the bills is to promote, provide and fulfill the rights of people with Mental illnesses.

Furthermore, the highlights of the bill include access to every person for mental healthcare and treatment, decriminalize suicide attempts, self-proposed manner of treatment, restrictive use of Electro Convulsive Therapy, and focus on the rights of persons with mental illness.

Self-Proposed Manner of Treatment

A person who is not a minor will have the right to make an advanced directive in writing specifying the way the person wishes or does not wish to be cared for and treated for a mental illness.

Decriminalizing Suicide

A person who tries to commit suicide will not be criminally punished but rather be considered as a person with severe stress and concerns.

Restrictive use of Electro Convulsive Therapy (ECT)

ECT will not be used on minors, and in the case of adults ECT will only be used with muscle relaxants and anaesthesia.

Right to Access Mental treatment from Mental Health Services

Every person will have the right to access mental health care. Moreover, every person will be treated from healthcare providers. In addition, these will be run or funded by the Government.

Implementations of Government Plans and Programs

The government plans to implement programs for the prevention of mental illness. Additionally, some of these programs are suicide reduction programs, emergency healthcare training, and mental intervention awareness.

Jurisdiction of Mental Establishments

All mental establishments whether private or public establishments will be brought under the jurisdiction of the Mental Health Act (Currently a Bill). Moreover, registration will be necessary prior to operating a Mental Health establishment.

To oversee mental health programs in the country the government aims to establish Central and State Mental Health Authority. These will be established within 9 months of the Act receiving approval by the President.