China tackles surge in mental illness

Nature (Impact Factor: 41.46). 11/2010; 468(7321):145. DOI: 10.1038/468145a
Source: PubMed


Psychological examinations to be added to selection procedure for
government officials.

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    • "Recent developments include increased funding for mental health research, partial insurance coverage for psychotropic medications, and discussion of psychological testing requirements for senior government officers and leaders of industry (Cyranoski, 2010; Park, Xiao, Worth & Park, 2005). Notwithstanding, there are few psychiatrists and resources for patients remain far below what is needed (LaFraniere, 2010). "
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    ABSTRACT: Background and aims: Increasingly positive attitudes have been reported among young people in China towards mental illness, but little is known about Chinese medical students' attitudes towards psychiatry, psychiatric services and patients. Methods: We administered a bilingual survey to Wuhan University medical students in the final years of their clinical training. Primary outcomes were composite scores on a 21-item attitudes toward psychiatry (ATP) survey and the number of correct responses to diagnostic questions following a series of three clinical case vignettes. Results: Mean composite score on the ATP items was 78/105 (SD = 9.6), representing overall positive attitudes among the students. Female gender and having learned about more psychiatric disorders were positively associated with a higher mean ATP score and remained so after adjustment for relevant covariates. Conclusions: Chinese medical students reported positive attitudes towards psychiatry, openness with regard to psychiatric services, and respect for psychiatric patients. Learning about a broad spectrum of psychiatric diagnoses and greater clinical contact with patients may improve overall attitudes of Chinese medical students towards psychiatry and their ability to make accurate diagnoses.
    Preview · Article · Jan 2013 · International Journal of Social Psychiatry
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    ABSTRACT: In the wake of dramatic economic success during the past 2 decades, the specialized field of neurology has undergone a significant transformation in China. With an increase in life expectancy, the problems of aging and cognition have grown. Lifestyle alterations have been associated with an epidemiologic transition both in the incidence and etiology of stroke. These changes, together with an array of social issues and institution of health care reform, are creating challenges for practicing neurologists throughout China. Notable problems include overcrowded, decrepit facilities, overloaded physician schedules, deteriorating physician-patient relationships, and an insufficient infrastructure to accommodate patients who need specialized neurologic care. Conversely, with the creation of large and sophisticated neurology centers in many cities across the country, tremendous opportunities exist. Developments in neurologic subspecialties enable delivery of high-quality care. Clinical and translational research based on large patient populations as well as highly sophisticated technologies are emerging in many neurologic centers and pharmaceutical companies. Child neurology and neurorehabilitation will be fast-developing subdisciplines. Given China's extensive population, the growth and progress of its neurology complex, and its ever-improving quality control, it is reasonable to anticipate that Chinese neurologists will contribute notably to unraveling the pathogenic factors causing neurologic diseases and to providing new therapeutic solutions.
    Preview · Article · Nov 2011 · Neurology
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    ABSTRACT: The draft National Mental Health Law of China was released for public consultations on June 10, 2011 [1] . Following wide-ranging public consultations, the draft was further amended by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress on October 24, 2011 [2,3] . Although the penultimate draft has been finalized, there are continuous debates and concerns about its potential negative effects on mental health services in China. The article in this issue of the Shanghai Archives of Psychiatry by Professor Xie [4] argues that the proposed law over-emphasizes patient's self-sufficiency and, thus, neglects traditional Chinese culture, accepted practices of mental health care in the country, and the insufficient community resources for providing mental health services; he contends that these weaknesses in the law will lead to a number of undesirable consequences [4] . Professor Xie's concerns reflect the negative attitudes about the law of a considerable number of mental health professionals in China who assume that the strong emphasis on the protection of the rights of psychiatric patients will restrict clinician's treatment options. Our views about the draft National Mental Health Law, which we briefly summarize below, are different. According to the United Nations Charter and relevant international treaties, the recognition of the human rights of psychiatric patients should be the fundamental basis for any mental health legislation [5] . China's proposed national law conforms to this basic international principle. It aims to promote mental health, improve the quality of mental health services, and protect the human rights of psychiatric patients during the process of hospital admission, treatment, and discharge [2] . There are an estimated 173 million Chinese citizens suffering from diagnosable psychiatric disorders [6] .
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2012 · Shanghai Archives of Psychiatry
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