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Rural Medical College - Department of Psychiatry

Introduction

“Our victories and our losses lie within ourselves .”

Department of Psychiatry, established in the year 1984, is situated on the first floor of the O.P.D. wing of Pravara Rural Hospital, Loni.

On the entering the department, one can appreciate the spirit that governs the functioning of the department and its able staff – pursuit of excellence, and unquenching thirst for improvement.

Right since inception, the department and the various experts who have headed it, as well as other members of faculty, have strived to provide a comprehensive ' Mental Health Service' catering to the needs of the rural population in and around Loni, as well as to provide an excellent clinically – oriented academic training programme to all the budding clinicians.

Biggest challenge faced and overcome over the years, has been to strike a balance between providing an affordable service to the local population, as well as ensuring that the services and facilities provided and training imparted is on par with the standards expected from a premier institute.

Today, we stand with our heads held high, knowing that we have achieved what we had set out to, yet, we have not let ourselves become victims of complacency. We know that the road ahead is long, and we have many more goals to achieve and standards to set.

Teaching & Learning Process

“Far better it is, to dare mighty things, win glorious triumphs, even chequered by failure, than rank with those poor spirits, who neither enjoy much, nor suffer; because they know neither victory, nor defeat.”
  1. Well equipped central & departmental library, with adequate number of subject - related books in their recent editions as well as easy access to international and national journals
  2. Use of overhead projector, slide projector and power point presentations as teaching tools to ensure better clarity of topics during lectures
  3. Internet facility for academic enrichment
  4. Good clinical exposure with adequate patient interaction and exposure to a wide variety of cases, to ensure practical co – relation with theoretical knowledge imparted during lectures
  5. Regular seminars, discussion of interesting/unusual cases, journal article presentations and discussions
  6. Regular assessment and review of undergraduate students' performances through revisions before each lecture/clinic and periodic mock examinations
  7. Development of speaking skills in students by introducing “Student lectures”, with each student preparing and presenting an allotted topic at the end of the academic teaching programme
  8. Extra – curricular activities in the form of debates, essay writing competitions
  9. Focus on “interactive” lectures instead of regular “teaching” sessions
  10. Special emphasis during clinical discussions on practical issues concerning Medical Ethics, clinical practice, medico legal aspects and precautions, necessity of empathetic handling of patients and their families


Services Offered By The Department

  1. Academic training of undergraduate students (M.B.B.S., B.D.S., B.P.Th., Nursing)
  2. Extensive O.P.D. & I.P.D. services with diagnostic and treatment facilities related to mental health issues/disorders under the guidance of experts in the field
  3. Special isolation ward facility with 24 hr. security
  4. Electro convulsive therapy (E.C.T.) carried out in the institute's Operation Theater under general anesthesia and skeletal muscle relaxation in conjunction with experienced anesthetists
  5. De – addiction services
  6. Speciality clinics : Child - guidance clinic, De – addiction clinic, Sexology clinic
  7. Narco – analysis
  8. Assessment & management of sleep – related difficulties
  9. Psychological testing including I.Q. testing, T.A.T., personality tests carried out by the experienced departmental psychologist
  10. Counselling facilities including psychotherapy (Behavior therapy, C.B.T.)
  11. Availability of clinical psychologist at all times in the campus for quick redressal of students' stress – related/academic/personal issues
  12. Diagnosis and management of problems related to human sexuality


Specialty Clinics

The hallmark of every Health sector institute is the conduction of speciality clinics, which address the ever – changing needs of the patients in a way that is a little different from regular out patient clinics. The department of psychiatry currently offers expert services on three days of the week in the form of Speciality clinics for those mental health issues which require a more definitive and structured approach towards management, as well as for those disorders where the education of family, relatives and friends is sometimes just as important as treatment of patients – be it the families of schizophrenics, with high levels of Expressed Emotion (E.E.), or families of alcoholics who are struggling to cope with various difficulties the disorder causes emotionally, financially, socially and medically, or the worried parents of children suffering from varying degrees of mental handicap, or the worried couple that comes with sexual dysfunction/discord – each of these cases requires an “All – encompassing” approach.

So far, we have successfully established three Speciality clinics, including a “Child guidance” clinic, a “De – addiction” clinic and a “Sexology” clinic, running on three days of the week, under the expert guidance of the departmental faculty. Though it took a little time for the population around to get familiar with the concept (not many are initially very sure of whether there would be any difference from the routine therapy offered), we have seen a steady increase in the interest and participation of the patients concerned, vindicating our beliefs and efforts.

It is indeed heartening to see the kind of response we are getting from patients as well as their families, which has spurred us on further to toy with the idea of increasing the number of Speciality clinics. We acknowledge it as a realistic goal which we soon hope to achieve.

“Don't give up though the pace seems slow; you may well succeed with another blow.”

Electro convulsive therapy (E.C.T.) or shock therapy or “shock treatment” as it is popularly known as, has remained the cornerstone of treatment of a wide variety of mental disorders since a few centuries now. No other treatment modality in the history of medicine has been so shrouded in controversy or has borne the brunt of so many misconceptions (even in the minds of the medical fraternity) as E.C.T. Sadly enough, the common man's perception of E.C.T. remains clouded by its often unfair portrayal in movies and literature.

We, however, have tried to spread awareness about this treatment modality and its often “magical” results amongst the population we serve, because it would be a pity if patients who could benefit from it were to lose out on the facilities made available due to a dearth of information or certain misconceptions.

We, at Pravara, have an excellent set up for the provision of electro convulsive therapy, administered in the institute's Operation Theater, under the expert hands of our psychiatrists and the watchful eyes of experienced anesthetists, to ensure that our patients get nothing but the best (and safest) of treatment to their satisfaction. The department is equipped with the latest brief – pulse E.C.T. machine and therapy is administered under general anesthesia and adequate muscle relaxation to ensure minimal discomfort to the patient.

Another noteworthy point is the further advances in psycho pharmacology that have enabled better medical management of disorders like schizophrenia and depression with a corresponding decrease in the necessity for E.C.T. as first line management for a number of cases.