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Global News

November 11, 2010 Leisure-time physical activity associated with lower levels of depression (Norway)

Physical activity is associated with lower levels of depression when it is perceived as leisure rather than workplace activity, according to a recent study in the British Journal of Psychiatry. The study involved the examination of self-reported physical activity levels and symptoms of depression and anxiety of 40,401 Norwegians. Physical and social data were also collected to relate other factors to the levels of activity and the risk of depression and anxiety.

November 8, 2010 Ontario expands MedsCheck program

The Ontario government is expanding the MedsCheck program to increase the number of people who can access consultations with their local pharmacist to ensure they are using their medications safely and effectively.

October 28, 2010 Training can improve eating skills of older people with dementia (Taiwan)

Eating skills and nutritional status of those with dementia can improve with training, according to a recent study in the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.

October 28, 2010 APA releases new guidelines for treatment of depression (USA)

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has released a new clinical practice guideline that summarizes specific approaches to treatment for people with major depressive disorder. The updated guideline includes new evidence-based recommendations on treatment decisions and addresses other topics, such as alternative and complementary therapies, treating depression during pregnancy and approaches to treating treatment-resistant depression.

October 14, 2010 Clinical guidelines for pregnancy and complex social factors (UK)

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) in the United Kingdom has released new clinical guidelines for pregnancy and complex social factors. In addition to introducing the concept of women-centred care and making general recommendations, the document provides specific guidelines related to pregnant women who: misuse substances; are recent migrants, asylum seekers or refugees, or who have difficulty reading or speaking English; who are under age 20; and who experience domestic abuse. See “Pregnancy and Complex Social Factors: A Model for Service Provision for Pregnant Women with Complex Social Factors,” September 2010, available at

October 14, 2010 E-mail-based mental health promotion study (Australia)

A new study, based in Australia at the University of Melbourne, is exploring a method of preventing depression through the Internet. Mood Memos is targeted to people experiencing depression symptoms which are not yet too severe, with the aim of averting depression or relapse. The study is looking at the effectiveness of e-mail-based mental health promotion for depression symptoms. The researcher is seeking participants 18 years of age and older from around the world until November 2010. For more information, or to sign up for the study, visit, or

October 14, 2010 WFMH releases report on mental health and chronic illnesses (International)

A new report by the World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH) was released for World Mental Health Day, October 10, 2010. The theme of this year’s report was an extension of last year’s theme of “integration of care,” focusing on the relationship between mental health disorders and chronic illnesses.

October 14, 2010 Removing policy barriers to integrated care in England (UK)

A recently released briefing paper, prepared by the Nuffield Trust for Research and Policy Studies in Health Services, examines how local clinicians and managers are working together to develop closer service integration and less fragmented care for patients in the United Kingdom. The paper focuses on what is facilitating or impeding change, as well as setting out proposals for policy-makers in order to enable more rapid progress towards developing better coordinated services.

October 14, 2010 Study finds that psychological violence during pregnancy contributes to postnatal depression (Brazil)

A study published in the Lancet concludes that psychological intimate partner violence is strongly associated with postnatal depression, independent of physical or sexual abuse. The finding has significant policy and program implications, given that the focus is often placed on prevention of physical violence, rather than psychological violence.

September 30, 2010 New justice/mental health online discussion forum (USA)

The United States Council of State Governments’ Justice Center has launched a new online discussion forum on justice and mental health issues. The forum, funded in part by the US Department of Justice, is intended for mental health care providers, justice services staff, police officers and policy-makers. The forum is designed to facilitate exchange of ideas about the design and implementation of criminal justice/mental health initiatives. The forum offers the opportunity to ask questions of experts in the field, discuss programs and strategies with peers, and read about current issues and challenges facing other programs across the US. To access the forum, visit