March 9, 2011

Panel on Global Advances and Challenges in Mental Health at UN Headquarters

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Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) and Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (FUNGLODE), in association with the Mission of the Dominican Republic to the United Nations, the Columbia University School of Social Work and the International Association of Schools of Social Work, will organize the panel “Mainstreaming Mental Health within Public Health Paradigms: A Global Look at Advances and Challenges,” on April 11, 2011, from 1:15 pm to 2:45 pm at UN headquarters of Conference Room 7 of the North Lawn Building.

The event will feature presentations by Dr. Ramona Torres, Presidential Commission on Public Health of the Government of the Dominican Republic; Dr. Janice Wood Wetzel, former Dean and Professor of Social Work at Adelphi University and Main UN Representative for the International Association of Schools of Social Work; Dr. Ellen Lukens, Firestone Centennial Professor of Clinical Social Work at Columbia University School of Social Work and Research Scientist at the New York State Psychiatric Institute; and Ms. Yosmayra Reyes, GFDD/FUNGLODE Fellow and M.A. Candidate in Social Work, Columbia University; and remarks by H.E. Federico Cuello Camilo, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipoteniary of the Dominican Republic to the United Nations.

Speakers will discuss efforts to spread awareness of mental health problems and to mainstream mental health within public health frameworks internationally. Topics that will be assessed during the panel include: social determinants of mental health problems; particular impact of mental health problems on women and girls; state of mental healthcare services and policies internationally; integration of mental health assessment within primary care; mental health education in global settings; psychoeducation techniques; implications for global mental health policy and practice; challenges; and best practices. Presentations will reflect specifically on experiences in the Dominican Republic, the United States, Kazakhstan and Japan.

GFDD and FUNGLODE and their partners believe that the lessons learned and the experiences gained in mainstreaming mental health within overall public health paradigms in the Dominican Republic, the United States, Kazakhstan and Japan will be of value to the Commission on Population and Development, government representatives of developing countries and civil society entities invested in the area of mental health.

About GFDD/FUNGLODE Fellow Yosmayra Reyes

Columbia University Student Yosmayra Reyes joined the Fellows Program in the summer of 2010 as an investigator in the area of mental health care. Her investigation assesses the implementation and awareness of national legislature related to mental health, particularly in the nation’s rural areas. Her study identifies existing challenges within the field of mental health, including early detection at the primary care level. In addition to evaluating the impact of health care policy on mental health services nationally, Ms. Reyes’ research also looks specifically at how mental health assessment is integrated within primary care in Monte Plata, Dominican Republic. Ms. Reyes’ investigation was carried out under the guidance of Dr. Alberto Fiallo Billini, Fellows Program Advisor and Advisor on Public Health to President of the Dominican Republic, Dr. Leonel Fernández.

For more information on this event, please contact Kerry Stefancyk:
T: (212) 751 5000

See Invitation