A great Partnership Conference
The 5th National Biennial joint standing forum of all ethnic psychiatrists in the UK and Ireland, ‘A Great Partnership’, was held on 7 December 2013 at The Royal College of Psychiatrists in London. This time, like twice before, it was organized by British Pakistani Psychiatrists Association (BPPA). All other participant associations of the College’s Diaspora Committee, British Indian, Srilankan, Greek, British Arabs, Sudanese, Polish, Iraq sub committee, SUD world project and College’s IAC, joined in the organizing committee, chaired by Dr Mateen Durrani, Chair BPPA. The college co-sponsored the event and approved the conference for CPD.
A great partnership or AGP is the forum for the second largest group of psychiatrists in the UK after the RCPsych. This is a great forum, where all ethnic psychiatrists of Britain can get together, with their families and enjoy personal, professional and familial contact. The first four conferences were family friendly and all members of the family were invited to the evening grand gala entertainment program. This time AGP was a purely professional affair. AGP co-opted and worked closely with the diaspora committee of the RCPsych and the CEO of the College, Venessa Cameron. College Dean Dr Wendy Burn, and Registrar Dr Laurance Mynors-Wallis, attended and the new College President, Prof. Simon Wessely did a presentation.
Each participating association did a brief presentation highlighting their activities and future priorities. Many worked closely with foreign institutions and that was source of great satisfaction for all that good work was being shared all across the globe. Work of AGP during major international calamities was also commended.
Three important presentations were given by distinguished academic and clinical specialists known for their unique work and contribution. Prof C Mohan’s talk on mental health and mental capacity acts; Prof T Rana’s talk was on recovery model in developing countries; and Prof D Bhugra’s talk was on mental health services for BME population in the UK.
Parallel workshops were held focusing on major issues of relevance to psychiatrists especially ethnic professionals. Royal College’s examinations are important for trainees and established psychiatrists have concerns regarding revalidation. These were addressed in the first workshop. Second workshop dealt with regulatory and disciplinary challenges that senior and trainee psychiatrists could face. Mental health law in other countries was the topic for the third workshop.
Plenary session was chaired by Dr Akmal Makhdum, founder of A great Partnership, which brought the whole day together and specific recommendations were prepared for the college, the Department of Health, the GMC and the NHS management. It was also decided that AGP website would be launched and a bulletin of the conference was published.
Next conference is planned to be held in 2015, in London and will be chaired by the Srilankan Psychiatrists Association (UK & Ire)
Dr Mateen Durrani
Chair Organising Committee
Chair British Pakistani Psychiatrists Association