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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 20  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 17-20

Attitude toward mental illness amongst urban nonpsychiatric health professionals


Department of Psychiatry, Command Hospital (Western Command), Chandimandir, Panchkula, Haryana, India

Correspondence Address:
Suprakash Chaudhury
Department of Psychiatry, Pravara Institute of Medical Sciences (Deemed University), Rural Medical College, Loni - 413 736, Maharashtra
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0972-6748.98409

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Background: This study was designed to examine the attitude of nonpsychiatric health professionals about mental illness in urban multispeciality tertiary care setting. Aim: To assess attitude toward mental illness among urban nonpsychiatric health professionals. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study design was used. A pretested, semistructured questionnaire was administered to 222 medical and paramedical staff at two tertiary care hospitals at Chandigarh. Results: There is an increased awareness of mental illness especially in military subjects. Literacy was associated with a positive attitude toward mental illness. Health care givers commonly fail to ask about the emotional well being of their patients. Many saw referral to psychiatrist as a form of punishment. There is uniform desire for more knowledge about psychiatric disorders in medical and paramedical staff. Conclusions: This study demonstrates the need for educational programs aimed at demystifying mental illness. A better understanding of mental disorders among the nonpsychiatric medical professional would help to allay fear and mistrust about mentally ill persons in the community as well as lessen stigmatization toward such persons.


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