The Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, NIMHANS came into existence on 31st December 2010. Currently this is the only Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry in the public health sector in India. We currently have 5 Consultants (2 Senior Professors, 1 Professor, 1 Associate Professor and 1 Assistant Professor) who work in effective liaison with Consultants from the Departments of Clinical Psychology, Psychiatric Social Work, Speech Pathology & Audiology, Neurorehabilitation, Human Genetics, Neurosurgery and Neurology to deliver multidisciplinary inputs. Clinical services are utilized by children and adolescents (up to the age of 18 years) from all over India, and other countries, especially the SAARC countries. Clinical services are offered as outpatient, inpatient and emergency settings. A multidisciplinary approach is used in the clinical evaluation and management of children and adolescents with various disorders. First contact (screening) outpatient services are run on all the days of the week, except Sundays, and function at a specially designed space (G-13) in the ground floor of the main NIMHANS outpatient building (OPD). Child and Adolescent Psychiatry outpatient facility for detailed evaluation and follow-up services is located on the ground floor (CAP-200) of the OPD and these functions on all days of the week, except Wednesdays and Sundays. A 40-bedded Child Psychiatry Centre (CPC) is for inpatient care of children and adolescents less than the age of 16 years. An Adolescent Psychiatry Centre (APC) that caters to adolescents between the ages of 16-18 years was inaugurated in 2016. This is a 24-bedded facility.
Apart from patient care, the Department seriously abides by its mandate of capacity building. Two super-specialty courses are offered in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry namely Post-Doctoral Fellowship (PDF) and Doctor of Medicine (DM). The Post-Doctoral Fellowship (PDF) course of 1-year duration and the Doctor of Medicine (DM) course of 3-years duration are available for qualified Psychiatrists (MD/DNB). These courses are designed to create the much-needed trained manpower in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry in the country. Postgraduate trainees from within NIMHANS and several government and private medical institutions are also posted in the Department to hone their skills in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry as part of their MD/DPM/DNB training.
Faculty of the department are actively involved in intramural and extramural research activities in the areas of Neurodevelopmental disorders (Intellectual Disability, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder etc), Mood Disorders (Depression, Bipolar Affective Disorder), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Life skills, Child abuse etc. The department faculty has authored several national and international peer-reviewed research publications. Trainees from NIMHANS (MD, MPhil, PhD, DM, PDF) take up research under guidance of the department faculty in several child and adolescent mental health areas for their course fulfillment. Faculty members also serve as resource persons in conferences, symposia, CME’s, workshops etc., held at regional, state, national and international levels.
The Department plays an active role in several governmental policies and legislations related to child and adolescent mental health. Faculty members are part of various committees constituted in the area of child and adolescent mental health at regional, state and national levels.