INDIA-AUSTRALIA – Building best practice models of community mental health
Key Indian partners visit Melbourne - March 2012
The director’s of three community mental health sites from across India have visited Melbourne for a one-week training program in early March 2012. This week long delegation visit is part of a two-year project in partnership with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, India. Read more about the project and partnership.
AAMH was honoured to have Professor Bir Singh Chavan, Head, Department of Psychiatry, Government Medical College, Chandigarh, Dr. Ajay P. Chauhan, Superintendent, Mental Health Hospital, Gujarat, and Dr. Ramasubramanian, Head, District Mental Health Program, Madurai, Tamil Nadu, attend the 5 day program in Melbourne. Our fourth partner in the project, Professor Amool Ranjan Singh, Director, Ranchi institute of Neuropsychiatry and Allied Sciences, was unfortunately unable to attend.
The visit began with an overview of the Victorian mental health system by Ms. Margaret Goding, Associate Director, AAMH and former Director of Mental Health and St Vincent’s. The delegation then met with the Chief Psychiatrist of Victoria, Dr. Ruth Vine to look at some of the challenges in implementing a community mental health system.
During the visit, the delegation saw a variety of community mental health services, including North Yarra Community Health to look at how mental health is integrated into primary health; St Mary’s House of Welcome to look at homeless services; MIND’s Sprout program to look at a community garden for the mentally ill; and VICSERV, which is a peak body for services including housing support, home-based outreach, psychosocial and pre-vocational day programs, residential rehabilitation, mutual support and self-help, respite care and Prevention and Recovery Care (PARC) services.
The group also visited a number of St Vincent’s Health services, including the inpatient unit, Clarendon Community Mental Health Clinic and Footbridge Community Care Unit.
Throughout the program, the delegation had opportunities to reflect on their own learning objectives and outcomes, and how some of the lessons and activities could be adapted back to their own services.
Professor Kwong Lee Dow, Chair of AAMH, hosted a dinner in honour of the delegation, which was also attended by AAMH advisory board members Professor Bruce Singh, Professor Ian Everall, and Professor Helen Herrman from the University of Melbourne, as well as Dr. Maria Tomasic, President of the Royal Australia New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP).
India-Australia Collaboration in Mental Health
International Conference and Workshop - February 2011
The Directorate General of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India has collaborated with Asia Australia Mental Health to organise an International Conference and Workshop on Community Mental Health Development in New Delhi 17-19 February 2011.
Inaugurated by Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad Hon’ble Minister of Health and Family Welfare Government of India in the auspicious presence of H. E. Mr. Peter Varghese Australian High Commissioner to India Commonwealth of Australia, the three day event was co-hosted at National Institute of Health and Family Welfare. Assistant Vice Chancellor of the University of Melbourne, Professor Bruce Singh represented the University of Melbourne at the opening ceremony of the conference. The distinguished participants included representatives from the Asia Pacific Community Mental Health Development Project (APCMHDP), a network of mental health government officials, chief psychiatrists and research leaders from seventeen countries.
This partnership comes from a 5-year history of productive collaboration between Asia-Australia Mental Health (AAMH) and the Directorate General of Health Services of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.
The theme of the meeting was ‘Building Partnership in Community Mental Health’. Participants discussed ways to promote and advocate for the development of community mental health in India and the Asia-Pacific, and to share knowledge and insights about best practice partnerships in community mental health in each of the network countries.
This inaugural partnership and auspicious event has the potential for Australia to have strong engagement with the Government of India and substantial involvement of influential stakeholders and the global community. The joint project in mental health has important implications for future education and knowledge transfer enterprise, and will build on the new linkages and collaboration in education and research in global health.
Building Partnerships in Community Mental Health workshop - Delhi, India February 2011