THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Three in a family, who were being treated at the Government Mental Health Centre, Peroorkada, have found shelter at an NGO. There is no one to support the family, which consists of 62-year-old K Prathapachandran and his sons Jnanendrakumar and Padmakumar. Their mother Jayakumari had, in June this year, set herself on fire. The family belongs to Neyyattinkara.
This is not the first time that NGOs have come forward to take care of patients. According to officials at the hospital, every day, they receive five to ten requests from relatives, who ask if the patients could be kept at the facility longer. The maximum time period that a patient can stay at the Peroorkada facility is 90 days. It is often NGOs which come to aid, according to hospital authorities.
Superintendent T Sagar said, “Rehabilitation of people with mental illness is a big issue, as there is no one to take care of them, once they have recovered. We can provide treatment for free, and can do regular follow-ups. But every patient should have someone to take care of them, every day. So, we welcome the efforts of NGOs who willingly come forward to take care of the patients.”
The family of three have been taken under the wings of the NGO Ashraya. Justice D Sreedevi was present when Ashraya came forward to take them. Its secretary, Kalayapuram Jose, said that they were taken to ‘Sangetham’, a unit of Ashraya which functions at Kottarakkara, in Kollam district.
A new rehabilitation facility of theirs is coming up on 12 acres of land at Kaniyakulangara. Prathapachandran and sons will be the first inmates there.
Jnanendrakumar, who is now 30 years, showed signs of mental disorder after passing Plus-Two. Twenty-five-year-old Padmakumar was studying BSc Nursing in Bengaluru, when he was diagnosed with schizophrenia. According to hospital authorities, the family has been admitted at the Peroorkada facility several times before.