Better Mental Health for Older People

Healthcare Community - Regional Initiatives

African Regional Initiative Aims and MethodsĀ 

The initiative held its first meeting at the Congress in Nice in 2002. The aim is to promote psychogeriatrics in its entirety in African countries where as of now there are very few institutions interested in psychogeriatrics. The initiative hopes to collaborate with existing national organizations in these countries as well as other international organizations interested in mental health of older people in developing countries. The initiative encourages formation of national and regional groups in Africa. Towards this aim coordinators have been chosen to take charge of activities in West and South Africa, and one will soon be appointed for East Africa. The initiative also hopes to collaborate with experts from Africa who are now living in diverse countries in Europe and North America. Members will comprise of psychiatrists, neurologists geriatricians, psychologists, social workers and basic medical scientists.

We hope to achieve our objectives through the following methods:

1. By online discussion on psychogeriatrics in Africa.

2. Organization of a regional conference in Africa with participation from experts from all over the world.

3. Establishment of national psychogeriatric associations, or where that is not possible, forming groups within existing national associations. For example, in Nigeria a geriatric psychiatry group was formed within the existing Association of Psychiatrists in Nigeria.

4. Circulation of the IPA Journal to various medical schools and teaching hospitals in the region.

5. Encourage establishment of units to care for the elderly within existing hospitals in the region or through primary care facilities.

Olusegun Baiyewu
June 2, 2003

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