Stories written by Raghav Gaiha

Mind the Treatment Gap

Implementation of the Mental Healthcare Act will require a restructuring of health-care services The Mental Healthcare Bill, 2016, which was passed in the Lok Sabha on March 27, 2017, has been hailed as a momentous reform. According to the Bill, every person will have the right to access mental health care operated or funded by the government; good quality and affordable health care; equality of treatment and protection from inhuman practices; access to legal services; and right to complain against coercion and cruelty. The Bill also empowers a mentally ill person to choose a treatment and her/his nominated representative, decriminalises attempted suicide, prohibits the use of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) to mentally ill adults without the use of muscle relaxants and anaesthesia, and contains provisions for care, treatment and rehabilitation for those who have experienced severe stress and attempted suicide. While these are laudable and ambitious objectives as they address major concerns of mental health care, there have been some critiques drawing attention to the lack of funds, trained personnel, and insufficient emphasis on community care. The ground reality, however, suggests that these objectives are not just overambitious but an overkill.

Aging, Depression and Disease in South Africa

Old age is often characterised by poor health due to isolation, morbidities and disabilities in carrying out activities of daily living (DADLs) leading to depression.

Is Demise of Small Farmers Imminent?

Imminent demise of small farmers is predicted as they are not competitive in a context of transforming agrifood markets. Most important is the transformation of the "post–farm gate" segments of the supply chains.

Angus Deaton: An Appreciation

After Adam Smith and Amartya Sen, Angus Deaton, this year’s Nobel laureate in economics, has contributed most to broaden and enrich our understanding of human well-being. His brilliant and path-breaking contributions to the theory and measurement of consumption, poverty, inequality, nutrition – and, more recently, aging, morbidity and suicides – have inspired a generation of economists to carry out reformulations, refinements and extensions.