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SYMPOSIUM: Substance Abuse
Organiser TRIPATHI, B.M., (All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi).

Although various substances have been used for thousands of year in India, they were largely controlled by societal norms. With the arrival of various potent illicit compounds and lowering of age of initiation of substance abuse, there has been a marked shift in the extent and pattern of use. Increase in substance abuse has serious consequences on the health and socio-economic spheres. The adverse effects are more pronounced among the developing countries, which have inadequate resources for intervention. The changing trends, along with the psychosocial costs involved will be discussed and methods of prevention suggested. Special emphasis would be given to the extent of the problem in women and children.


SYMPOSIUM: Perspectives on Health Psychology.
Organiser Tuli, R.K (Apollo Hospitals).

Twentieth century advent of modern medicine and public health enabled mankind to combat several serious diseases and improve life expectancy the world over. The development simultaneously turned the medical practice highly mechanical and exorbitant - creating an ever increasing hiatus between the resources available and the same needed to fulfil our commitments to the humanity. The W.H.O. resolution '.Health for all by year 2000 A.D." appears to have natural death. Unhealthy life-style with associated stress, junk-diet, poor physical activity, obesity, smoking, alcohol intake and substance abuse are becoming more popular in the developing nations. Environmental degradation continues in spite of all the awareness. The incidence of stress related Psychological disturbances and chronic diseases like Hypertension, Heart disease, Strokes, Cancer, Arthritis, Dyspepsia's, Allergies, etc., is on the increase. Concerns are mounting over the re-emergence of incurable infections, especially M.D.S. Tuberculosis, Malaria, A.I.D.S., Hepatitis and unknown viral diseases. Physical, psychological and social problems of the increasing population, especially that of the elderly due to increased life expectancy, need urgent concern. The healthcare practises based on modern medicine always made great claims on major achievements, but the W.H.O now endorses it to be a crisis on global scale. Dr. Hiroshi Nakajima, as Director General, World Health Organisation (W.H.O.) stated, "Our goal should not be solely to extend lives in the physical sense, but to ensure that the added years are worth living with diminishing handicaps and disabilities, and with a greater degree of health security." "In celebrating our extra years, we must recognise that increased longevity without quality of life is an empty prize, i.e., health expectancy is more important than life expectancy." The initial three dimensional W.H.O. definition that "Health is a state of positive physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely absence of disease" was found to have a serious deficiency and has now been reinforced with the fourth vital dimension of "spiritual" well-being. The current understanding of health was based on the modern scientific or the "allopathic" model. After a pursuit of this concept for almost a whole century, it's been now scientifically acknowledged that true health can be attained only by following the ancient wisdom of life as defined in Vedanta and practised in Indian culture for thousands of years. It is still not too late to call for global action, identify and reschedule priorities. It is mandatory to broaden the outlook and training of healthcare professionals. The science for the coming millennium shall explore the time-proven ancient wisdom from all the great civilisations for a HOLISTIC vision of health and healing through a true synthesis of the traditional and the modern, the oriental and the western. After all, the modern physicians still take the Hippocratic Oath; swear by Apollo - the physician, and Aesclepius - the God of Healing. As the seven colours of rainbow fuse to form the life giving 'white light', modern healthcare infrastructure reinforced with judicious blending of the traditional principles of Ayurveda, Yoga & Naturopathy, Acupuncture & Moxibustion along with Reflexology, etc. would provide us with the ideal solution to ensure the physical, mental, social and spiritual well-being of each individual, family, community and the whole society. The present focus on curative services shall thus be shifted to the promotive and preventive components of health through the practice of 'righteousness or morality' in day-to-day life and natural means of cure - as far as possible. We must take full advantage of the modern diagnostics in early detection and accurate diagnosis for prompt care of any disease process to 'nip it in the bud'. The sound principles of nature must be fully harnessed to : A. Further improve the health of those who value it, B. Prevent the chances of any future sickness for those who wish to continue to enjoy their health, C. Offer early cure to the wise who are already conscious of their sickness but are not offered any permanent cure and have to suffer life-long intake and side-effects of drugs, with progressive deterioration of health and self-confidence, D. Effectively and efficiently rehabilitate, and even try to cure those who are the victims of any conventionally incurable ailments so that they an find the life meaningful once again


PAPERS


SOME PSYCHOLOGICAL FACTORS IN RECOVERY FROM SURGERY
AGARWAL, Adesh & MISHRA, S. (D.D.U. Gorakhpur University)

The present study examines the role of two psychological variables namely, future orientation (FO) and optimism (OP) in recovery from surgical intervention. Results showed that overall FO is lower in patients (N=20) who had undergone surgery for various elements as compared to nonpatient group (N=20). Amongst the patients those who had high rather than low FO, showed less distress and greater recovery at the time of discharge from the hospital.

ABSTRACTS
(SAAP-Delhi Con.-1999)
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