As part of our ongoing partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO), Fountain House participated in the mhGAP Forum on October 9th - 10th in Geneva. The two-day convening brought together over 200 stakeholders from Member States, United Nations Agencies, Universities and NGO's.
Pictured: mhGAP forum plenary session; Clubhouse International Executive Director Joel Corcoran and Board Member Bea Bergamasco, WHO Director of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Dr. Shekhar Saxena, Fountain House Director of External Affairs Jeff Aron, Chair of Clubhouse Europe Wander Reitsma and Helsinki Clubhouse member Pauli Loija
At a panel focused on Longer, Healthier Lives for People with Severe Mental Disorders, Dr. Shekhar Saxena, WHO's Director of Mental Health and Substance Abuse, stated that until three years ago, excess mortality was not an organizational or a global priority. After Dr. Saxena met with Fountain House in 2014, he was inspired to establish our partnership in a project to extend and improve the lives of people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression.
Pictured: Presenting the Fountain House model in session on Longer, Healthier Lives
We presented Fountain House's Community System of Care which combines medical and psychiatric care with social interventions, and highlighted activities in our Wellness Unit and at our Sidney R. Baer, Jr. Health Center.
We are happy to share that a Policy Brief was completed and distributed to everyone in attendance at the mhGAP Forum which featured Fountain House as a case study. You can download the Policy Brief here.
At the conclusion of the mhGAP forum, Fountain House hand-delivered a letter signed by more than 600 representatives of the international Clubhouse community to the office of Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, new Director General at WHO. We asked that Dr. Tedros to ensure that mental health remains a WHO priority.
It was deeply meaningful to be able to offer our cost-effective, successful solution to so many stakeholders from around the world at the mhGAP Forum.