Attitude of the university students and teachers towards mentally ill, in Lahore, Pakistan

Zahid Javed, Farooq Naeem, David Kingdon, Muhammad Irfan, Nasir Izhar, Muhammad Ayub
Journal of Ayub Medical College, Abbottabad: JAMC 2006, 18 (3): 55-8

BACKGROUND: Although, much is known about the attitudes and beliefs people hold towards mental illness in the west, no such work has been done in the developing countries. It is difficult to measure the attitudes of the general public in developing countries due to differences in terminology and concepts of the illness. However, majority of educated people in the developing countries can recognise common psychiatric disorders by their western names. We therefore, decided to measure attitudes of university students and teachers in Lahore, Pakistan. This study was carried out to assess the attitude of university students and teachers in Lahore, Pakistan.

METHODS: A survey form was circulated among the university students and the teachers in Lahore, Pakistan. Of the 300 survey forms 194 were returned.

RESULTS: Majority of the respondents held negative attitudes towards people with schizophrenia, depression and drug and alcohol disorders.

CONCLUSIONS: The views held by the university teachers and students reveal negative attitudes towards mentally ill. Attitudes of those who knew someone with mental illness were similar to those who did not.

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