the 14th Annual International Mental Health Conference and 12th Annual Child Mental Health and Psychiatry Conference

          Thailand Ministry of Public Health held the 14th Annual International Mental Health Conference and 12th Annual Child Mental Health and Psychiatry Conference which emphasized on “Public Mental Health for Human Dignity” in order to support more than 1.5 million psychiatric patients each year. By the help of the family doctors and the emphasis on “human Dignity”, the Ministry of Public Health is certain that this strategy would increase the success rate of treatment.
          On June 15th, at the Miracle Grand Convention Hotel, Bangkok, Professor Dr.RatchataRatchatanawin, the Minister of Public Health opened the14th Annual International Mental Health Conference and the 12th Annual Child Mental Health and Psychiatry Conference 2015 under the conceptual framework of “Public Mental Health for Human Dignity”which was held by the Department of Mental Health during 15-17th June 2015. This conference was intended to exchange knowledge, skills, and technology as well as providing a chance for presenting academic papers in these fields. There were more than 1,000 health personneland academicians from both government and non government sectors who were the experts on mental health, child mental health, and mental health crisis. The participants were from 19 countries around the world including Austria, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, Canada, China, the UK, Finland, Germany, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Sri-Lanka, Vietnam, and Thailand.
Professor Dr.RatchataRatchatanawin said that in the past three years, there have been more new psychiatric patients. Each year, at least 1.5 million patients come to get the treatments. Most of them are psychosis. Some patients could not go for the treatment because they feel ashamed to meet psychiatrists. Moreover, the society is still prejudiced to those with mental health problems because most people don’t know that this disease can be healed. The Ministry of Public Health realizes the human value and dignity, therefore the Mental Health Act B.E.2551 was push in order to decrease the disparity and focus on the equal service access, for the patients could get treatments and live in community safely and happily. It was proved that the past performance has been successful apparently. For the reason that the hospitals with mental health wards as well as emergency services for psychiatric and narcotic patients have been increased from 58% to 67%. The psychiatric patients could receive their drug constantly from the community hospitals near their houses which made the access rate of the psychosis patients and the depression increased up to 42% and 38%,respectively. Moreover, the rate of drug addicted treated patients who didn’t return to the drug again was as high as 80%.
         From the “Family Doctor” policy, there would be 60,000 family doctors by the end of this year. In every province and district, the staff of the sub-district health promotion hospitals would be the main driving mechanism to take care of both physical and mental health of people in their responsible areas closely. They would not be only close friends,but they also are the relatives of every family. It was intended that the family doctors could reassure people to rely on them whenever getting sick. Beside that, these health personnel have to work with the community and local government to visit, encourage, give treatment, and arrange proper environment in order to encourage and make psychiatric patients get better quality of lives, self esteem, and living in society worthy.  The family doctors also ensure that every patient in every family would receive comprehensive care, and get continuing drugs which enhances the success rate of psychiatric treatment which make every people feels safe.
         Dr.Jetsada Chokdamrongsuk, the Department of Mental Health director general, said that this 14th Annual International Mental Health Conference made an important guideline to develop the staff potential and create the network of mental health participation in the international level. For the participants could deliver the qualitative and standardized mental health care to people as they are the ones with dignity and human being.

         All sectors could help one another to protect human right deprivation by
1. Make an awareness campaign on human value and the equality no matter what gender, age, and status they are. This also includes stopping violence against children, women, and elderly as well as stopping deprivation others’ right.
2. Promote human dignity and develop or push necessary policies and laws in rights protection that cover all groups of citizens.
3. Create mechanisms to access qualitative and standardized health service via comprehensive health care network.
4. Enhance integration and cooperation in the field of mental health,especially the participation from all sectors both at the national and international levels.
          In this academic conference, Department of mental Health gave Mental Health Award and honorable awards to outstanding people and organization in Mental Health work. This year Mental Health Award was given to Dr.VallopThaineua, the former Deputy Minister of Health and former Permanent Secretary for Health.
          For the “Professor PrasopRatakorn Award”, the outstanding person who got the award was Mr.ChusakJanthayanond, the President of the Association of parents for Thai Persons with Autism, and the Deep South Coordination Center had gotten this award in the organization category.
For the “Dr.UdomLaksanavicharn Awards”, the people who got the prizes were Dr.TubtimChatwattanatum, Deputy Director of Health, Betong Hospital, Yala Province, Ms.PatchareeKhamthita, the registered nurse from Mae-Tha hospital, Lamphun Province, Ms.NattakarnMuenta, the registration nurse from Health Promotion District Sompoi, RasiSalai district, Si SaKet Province, and Ms. JintanaRungrueangwong, village health volunteer, Sa Keao Province. For the organization, the “Dr.UdomLaksanavicharn Award” was given to Takbai Hospital, Narathiwat Province.

           In the conference, there were many interesting panel discussions, workshops, lectures and presentations such as “Public Mental Health : An Overview of Principles and Application”by Dr.Jonathan Campion, the Director for Public Mental Health and Consultant Psychiatrist at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust ,“Promote Child Health, Prevent Toxic Stress, Invest the Future” by Dr.VallopThaineua, Thai National Mental Health Survey 2013, Understanding and overcome the Complexity of Child and Adolescent Problems in Thai Society, Sexual Offender: Psychiatric patient or Criminal, Social Network and its effect across Lifespan, “Help Me” Cry…. from Southern Thailand, and the workshop : Well Child Development for the Future of Thailand, Thai Happiness Project : 7 years lessons ,and  Mindfulness Based Therapy and Counseling etc.

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Happy New Year 2014
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