PRIME's sixth annual meeting was an exciting event as the teams worked together to plan it's activities for the research programme's two-year extension. One of the highlights of the meeting was a two-day writing workshop which allowed time for partners to meet, look at data from the PRIME research studies and discuss plans for publications.
Carrie Brooke-Sumner, the first PRIME PhD candidate to graduate's PhD focused on developing a community-based psychosocial rehabilitation programme for people with schizophrenia in the North West province of South Africa as part of PRIME.
This year PRIME’s UCT team took part in the #DignityInMind campaign, organised by the Alan J Flisher Centre for Public Mental Health – the UCT team’s Cape Town base. PRIME was prominently featured on the campaign website and mentioned in all press releases disseminated between World Suicide Prevention Day on 10 September and throughout World Mental Health Month in October.
From 6 to 9 August PRIME was represented at the Rural Health Conference (RHC) in Grahamstown, South Africa. Ònè Selohilwe, PRIME South Africa’s project coordinator delivered a keynote address titled “Developing Integrated District Rural Health Systems in South Africa: Lessons from PRIME” and research uptake officer, Maggie Marx, tended a PRIME exhibition to disseminate specially designed material explain PRIME, its goals and successes.
Since its launch in 2008 a number of countries have undertaken to implement the WHO mental health Gap (mhGAP) Action Programme.
The PRIME South Africa team has achieved a milestone for task sharing of psychosocial interventions beyond the borders of South Africa.
On the morning of 15 September I flew from Kathmandu to Chitwan, the PRIME district implementation site in Nepal. I was accompanied by Nagendra Luitel, the PRIME Nepal Project Coordinator. Our plan was to visit health facilities where the PRIME district mental healthcare plan had been implemented, as well as facilities that have been involved in the scale up phase. We also wished to visit the PRIME research team, based at the TPO Nepal offices in Chitwan.
On 8 August 2016 the Rajya Sabha, India’s Council of States and the upper house of its parliament, made a decision that is to greatly impact mental health care in the country. The Mental Health Care Bill – 2013 was introduced on 19 August 2013 and just shy of three years later, it’s been passed by the Rajya Sabha.
PRIME’s two most recent research publications deals with perinatal mental disorders – a common public health problem, especially in low and middle-income countries (LMICs).
PRIME was recently featured on NDTV's programme Every Life Counts in a news clip zooming in on perinatal depression in India. A full feature will be aired in September.
Prof Crick Lund, Director of the Alan J Flisher Centre for Public Mental Health and PRIME CEO, has received the prestigious TW Kambule Award from the National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF).