Mayor inaugurates Kolkata Mental Health Fair

Kolkata: Kolkata Mental Health Fair 2020, a unique mental health awareness drive, was inaugurated by the city's Mayor Firhad Hakim at SSKM Hospital on Thursday.

The country's first mental health fair will continue for 4 days to reach out to the maximum number of people from a wide spectrum of the community. The fair is being organised by Kolkata Psychiatric Association and Institute of Psychiatry (IOP).

After inaugurating the programme, Hakim said: "IOP is celebrating its 202nd foundation year. It has organised the world's first mental health fair, which will open a new dimension in the healthcare system in the state. Following the directives of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, the health infrastructure in the state has undergone a sea change with various facilities being installed at the hospitals. People from other states like Assam, Bihar and Jharkhand visit SSKM Hospital for better treatment. Apart from AIIMS, SSKM Hospital provides the best quality treatment in the country." Psychiatrists from across the country, mental health professionals, NGOs, psychologists, counselors, students and nurses have joined hands to make this grand initiative a milestone in building awareness about mental illness and creating a conducive ecosystem to provide the best possible support to help people recover from psychological illness.

Dr Pradip Saha, director, Institute of Psychiatry, who is also the secretary of the organising committee, said: "The mental health scenario in the whole world is very alarming and there is still a stigma attached to mental illness. The awareness about mental health is very poor and that is why mental illness is often under-diagnosed and underreported. People do not pay attention to their mental wellbeing and end up with severe depression, anxiety disorder, stress and many other diseases."

Dr Saha further added: "Our aim is to generate awareness about mental health and remove the stigma attached to it. Modern research and innovations have enabled us with ample possibility of successfully treating mental disorder. State-of-the-art technology can do wonders in this sphere of medical treatment."

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