City govt plans to decongest homes for senior citizens

City govt plans to decongest homes for senior citizens

The Delhi government is planning to decongest the existing old age home and the homes for the mentally challenged by shifting them to the halfway homes in the city. The halfway homes, though ready, are yet to be operational.

The state government has given the go-ahead to Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS) to make the five halfway homes operational.

“The responsibility has been given to IHBAS so that the homes are operational at the earliest,” said a senior official, Social Welfare Department (SWD).

The halfway homes have been constructed with the aim to accommodate people who are recovering from mental illness.

In May, the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) had visited the government-run old age home in Bindapur and sent a notice to the SWD highlighting the shortcomings at the home.  The old age home is overcrowded with over 75 inmates against a sanctioned strength of 50.

At least 30 per cent of the inmates suffer from mental illness at the home but there are no counsellors to look after them.

“The department is now planning to segregate the patients suffering from mental illness by shifting them to the halfway homes. These inmates need special care and counsellors which is currently lacking at the old age home.

The staff at the halfway homes will be receptive to the needs of patients with mental health conditions.

The old age home, which is currently stretched beyond capacity, will have the sanctioned number of inmates. Inmates from the home for the mentally challenged at Asha Kiran will also be moved to these homes,” said the official.

Currently, there are two old age homes in the city — one at Bindapur and another at Lampur which is run in collaboration with Delhi Brotherhood Society, an NGO.
The number of inmates at the Lampur home remains sparse with poor infrastructurl facilities at the home.

The IHBAS will be reviewing the condition of the inmates before they are moved to the halfway homes. In the first phase, two halfway homes — one for women and the other for male inamtes — are likely to be operational.

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