Tele Mental Health Assistance and Networking Across States (Tele-MANAS) initiative has been launched by Ministry of Health & Family Welfare during October 2022. It aims to provide free tele-mental health services all over the country round the clock, particularly catering to people in remote or under-served areas.
A toll-free, 24/7 helpline number (14416) is now available as part of the initiative.
Tele-MANAS aims to provide free tele-mental health services all over the country round the clock, particularly catering to people in remote or under-served areas.
The programme includes a network of 38 tele-mental health centres of excellence spread across 27 States and UTs, providing mental health services in over 20 languages and over 1600 trained counsellors running the first-line services. NIMHANS Bengaluru is the nodal centre.
A toll-free, 24/7 helpline number (14416) has been set up across the country allowing callers to select the language of choice for availing services. Service is also accessible with 1-800-891-4416. The calls would be routed to Tele-MANAS cells in the respective state and union territory.
Tele-MANAS will be organised in two tier system; Tier 1 comprises of state Tele-MANAS cells which include trained counsellors and mental health specialists. Tier 2 will comprise of specialists at District Mental Health Programme (DMHP)/Medical College resources for physical consultation and/or e-Sanjeevani for audio visual consultation. Presently there are 5 regional coordination centres along with 51 State/UT Tele MANAS cells.
Services offered by Tele MANAS
- Tele Counselling by trained counsellors.
- Tele Consultation by Mental Health professionals when required.
- Referral Services to other Mental Health Establishments such as Medical Colleges, DMHP services and speciality institutes.
Who can reach out to Tele MANAS?
- Any individual with mental health issues can reach out to Tele MANAS services for help.
- Family members of persons with mental health issues can reach out for help.
- Grass-root health care providers/community health providers i.e., Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHAs), and community volunteers from the community can reach out to Tele MANAS on behalf of an individual or individuals in that community with mental health issues.
The Tele-MANAS services can be availed by calling toll-free numbers 14416 and 1-800-891-4416. The callers can select the language of their choice for availing of services.
- The services have been divided into two tiers
- The first tier consists of trained counsellors and mental health specialists. The callers will first interact with a centralised Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS), after which the call will be transferred to a trained counsellor in their respective regions.
- The second tier is in-person services which include specialists at District Mental Health Programme (DMHP)/Medical college resources for physical consultation and e-Sanjeevani for audio-visual consultation.
Image source: PIB
- At present, there are five regional coordination centres along with 51 State/UT Tele-MANAS cells.
- 900 Tele-MANAS counsellors have been trained by NIMHANS.
- The Union Government aims to open at least one Tele-MANAS cell in each state/UT.
- India saw a 35% rise in clinically significant depression and anxiety disorders due to the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020 (As per a Lancet study). Tele-MANAS comes at a time when mental health has deteriorated following the COVID-19 outbreak.