Opinion | India’s ignored mental health challenge
Social stigma and poor state capacity come in the way of tackling one of its biggest health burdens
The Narendra Modi government’s Ayushman Bharat health insurance initiative will be launched on Sunday. There will doubtless be fierce debates about its policy direction as implementation data comes in. The five research papers released by the India State-level Disease Burden Initiative last week and published in The Lancet family of journals deserve attention in this context. Each report focuses on a specific non-communicable disease (NCD)—they account for the majority of India’s health burden now—and aims to inform Modicare’s state-specific planning. One of them is particularly welcome, focusing on an issue that has received short shrift so far: suicide and the associated mental health issues.