Annual Report 2006
Given the vast size and
nature of our continent, the small numbers of health professionals,
in particular psychiatrists, the successful meetings each year at
the College Annual Conference have become a popular and important
Significant sessions and
topics have been presented at each venue since 2002. The gathering
of African-based colleagues and expatriate colleagues as well as
our many friends is a highlight for those who have attended the
Plans for 2007 at the
Edinburgh meeting are a session on “Innovation in the management of
mental health: social-cultural and economic realities in Africa” as
well as an AGM of the Division.
Discussions in the past
year have centred round development and training projects and
assistance to the region.
The AGM in Glasgow of
African-based psychiatrists and friends was opportunity of
interchange of ideas.
At the meeting Professor
David Ndetei was co-opted to the Executive. Discussion included the
overseas volunteer scheme of the College highlighting the merits
and the potential benefits to the host communities.
Processes to increase the
momentum of research in Africa were explored. The Division is
seeking to network internationally as well as to continue building
bridges with other African countries including those psychiatrists
presently practicing in the UK.
On the initiative of Dr
Olufemi Olugbile, the first newsletter is due for distribution in
January. This is yet another attempt to improve the communication
An important meeting for
Psychiatry in Africa is the Regional WPA Congress in March 2007 in
Division participation is
planned as well as attendance by officers of the Royal College and
BIA is anticipated.
Future plans must focus
on recruitment of membership. The Division is a particularly small
one with just over 50 members in good standing at last count.
Evaluation of the
situation indicates that there are potentially more members who
have been lost or not maintained their membership or have moved
from the region.
It is essential to
strengthen the contact with members and to recruit previous members
The introduction of
“affiliate membership” of the Division in the form of associates
from other divisions would include that of psychiatrists from
Africa now resident in the UK.
This would strengthen and
support the division as well as mental health services and should
be actively followed up.
Professor Tuviah Zabow