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Epidemiological findings on prevalence of mental disorders in India

By H. C. Ganguli


Fifteen epidemiological studies on psychiatric morbidity in India have been analysed. National all-India prevalence rates for all mental disorders ' and five specific disorders have been worked out The national prevalence rates for 'all mental disorders ' arrived at are 70.5 (rural), 73 (urban) and 73 (rural + urban) per 1000 population. Prevalence of schizophrenia is 2.5/1000 and this seems to be the only disorder whose prevalence is consistent across cultures and over time. Rates for depression, anxiety neurosis, hysteria and mental retardation are provided. Urban morbidity in India is 3.5 percent higher than the rural rate, but rural-urban differences are not consistent for different disease categories. In Hindi speaking north India, mental morbidity amongst factory workers is two and half times that of the non-industrial urban inhabitants and five times the rural morbidity. The present data are expected to serve as baseline rates for mental health planners and for psychiatrists interested in epidemiological studies. Key words: National prevalence rate, all mental disorders, specific disorders, rural-urban difference, urban industrial morbidity, schizophrenia rate stability Mental health planners in India have from time to time estimated the prevalence of mental disorders in the country. The data helps in understanding the status of mental health in the country and in planning for prevention and treatment of disorders The Bhore Committee (Govt of India, 1946) extrapolated from rates in U.K. and U.S.A. and concluded that mental patients requiring hospitalization in India be taken as 2 per 1000. Again in 1966, the Mental Healt

Year: 2000
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