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DEBATE/PERSPECTIVE/VIEWPOINT
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 33  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 288-290

Psychiatric social workers in legal aid services in hospitals: Exploring roles in Indian context


Department of Psychiatric Social Work, NIMHANS, Bangalore, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Ameer Hamza
Department of Psychiatric Social Work, NIMHANS, Bangalore
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0971-9962.218592

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Mental health and legal problems are interlinked in many ways. People facing legal issues may develop mental health problems, and people with mental illness and family also face legal issues. In India, Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 gives provision for free legal aid services for the poor sections of society. Authors explain the roles of psychiatric social workers in legal aid services in hospitals. Social case work as a method of social work is suitable in legal aid services. Counseling, referrals, collateral contacts, advocacy and networking are major services from the social work perspective. Knowledge about laws and mental illness is essential for social workers to work in legal aid clinics (LACs).


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