Help seeking pathway of individuals suffering from mental disorders is affected by their beliefs and attitudes towards various sociocultural and environmental factors relevant to these disorders. The current study aimed at exploration of correlation between attitudes and beliefs of patients seeking help from psychiatry out-patient department and their care givers for role of magico-religious and supernatural influences in mental disorders. The study was carried out at the out-patient psychiatry department of a tertiary care multispecialty hospital. Following inclusion in the study, the patients and care givers were assessed for demographic variables. Subsequently, they were assessed for their attitudes, belief and behaviour with regards to magico-religious and supernatural influences in context of mental disorders. Correlation between various domains of Supernatural Attitude Questionnaire (SAQ) was carried out using Pearsons correlation coefficient. The study sample comprised of 44 (45%) female and 54 (55%) male care givers. Forty six percent of care givers reported belief in magico-religious and supernatural influences. Sixty one percent of care givers had favorable attitude towards magico-religious and supernatural influences as cause of mental illness. Male and female care givers did not differ significantly on any of the domains of SAQ. Help seeking behaviour of care givers with regards to magico-religious and supernatural influences was more strongly correlated with the attitudes of the care givers towards causal role of these influences in mental disorders. There is a positive correlation between beliefs, attitudes and behaviour of psychiatric patients and their care givers with regards to magico-religious beliefs and supernatural factors.
Yatan Pal Singh Balhara and Tarun Yadav, 2012. A Comparative Study of Beliefs, Attitudes and Behaviour of Psychiatric Patients and their Care givers with Regards to Magico-religious and Supernatural Influences. Journal of Medical Sciences, 12: 10-17.