Demand for Clinical Psychologists
Clinical Psychologists – At BM Institute of Mental Health, to deal with the shortage of clinical psychologists in the state, Rehabilitation Council of India (RCI) has approved a course on clinical psychology. To those holding a Masters in Psychology, the extensive one-year programme, which is being offered this year, is open. Candidates can apply for this one-year programme.
From RCI as well as the state government, after a wait of two years, BM Institute, Gujarat’s oldest mental health institute, got the approval. In addressing the crunch in the state, experts in the area believe that addition of six clinical psychologists will not only help in attaining to patients, but it will be of great help to address mental health issues across the country in general.
Overview of Clinical Psychology
In clinical Psychology, currently, only Gujarat Forensic Sciences University (GFSU) offers an M Phill and every year they produce nearly 12 such professionals. Since it is an M Phill programme, those who graduate can also practice as well as teach. However, there will be people who are solely graduated from BM institute.
Clinical Psychology is a broad branch of psychology that focuses on diagnosis and treatment of mental, emotional, and behavioural disorders.
Reiterating the same, the Director of BM Institute of Mental Health, Dr Madhu Singh said, “Since we did not have enough faculty members though we had sent a proposal to start the course two years ago, the request was rejected. Last year, after we recruited, to start the course we again sought permission. We got 41 applications for six seats this year. To work in the healthcare sector, social sector, schools, community, mental health organisations, etc., these licensed professionals have a great opportunity.”
Across 12 states, referring to a report by Bengaluru-based National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS) that covered covering 34,802 people Singh said, “13.7 per cent is the lifetime prevalence of mental disorder as per the report. At least 150 million Indians are in need of intervention for mental health extrapolating the results of the 12 states to entire country would mean. With mental disorders prevalent in 7.3 per cent population, the report further stated that about 9.8 million children aged 13-17 are in need of medical intervention. I believe we will be able to diagnose cases of mental health disorders at an earlier stage provided if we have more number of licensed professionals.”
As per RCI guidelines, with mental health issues, only a person with M Phil in Clinical Psychology can offer consultation and services to patients.