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Global News

September 2, 2010 OWHN releases webinar on use of antidepressants in pregnancy

A new webinar from the Ontario Women’s Health Network (OWHN) explores available evidence to answer the question: do pregnant women benefit from taking antidepressants? Although not approved for use during pregnancy by Health Canada or the United States Food and Drug Administration, antidepressants are increasingly being used to treat depression in pregnancy. Recent research has focused on increased risk to infants, leading to conflicting advice on the use of some types of antidepressants. While some studies suggest avoiding the use of antidepressants throughout pregnancy, others recommend use of medications to avoid harm to mother and infant due to untreated depression. See the webinar “Antidepressants in Pregnancy: Is There Evidence of Benefit?” October 29, 2009, available at www.cwhn.ca.

September 2, 2010 DSM-V narrows the range of normal behaviour (USA)

The effect of stigma in the context of the new DSM-V is examined in a recent article in the Journal of Mental Health. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) is widely used in North America to classify mental disorders, and is currently in its fourth edition. The DSM-V, which will replace the current edition, will be published in May 2013.

August 19, 2010 Revised standards for psychology services in correctional facilities (USA)

The International Association of Correctional and Forensic Psychology has published revised standards for correctional facility administrators and clinicians in the areas of administration and operations, roles, services, staffing and professional development, ethical practice guidelines, mental health services and programs, mental health records, and research. See “Standards for Psychology Services in Jails, Prisons, Correctional Facilities and Agencies,” 3rd edition, in Journal of Criminal Justice and Behaviour(July 2010; 37[7]: 749-808), at cjb.sagepub.com.

August 19, 2010 New report on mental disability and deportation (USA)

Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union have released a new report, Deportation by Default: Mental Disability, Unfair Hearings, and Indefinite Detention in the US Immigration System. Based on 104 interviews with non-citizens with mental disabilities, their family members, social workers, psychiatrists, immigration attorneys, judges and rights advocates, the report indicates that non-citizens with mental disabilities face erroneous deportation by United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement, an investigative agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

August 19, 2010 Promising principles and practices for Aboriginal mental health and wellbeing (Australia)

A new book, Working Together: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health and Wellbeing Principles and Practice, offers a framework for understanding Aboriginal mental health that acknowledges the importance of cultural identity and resilience and the impacts of racism, colonization and assimilationist policies. Culturally specific clinical mental health assessment processes and treatment interventions are explored.

August 5, 2010 Integrating mental health into primary health care in Zambia

Zambia underwent health reforms in 1991 but mental health is still a low priority in the healthcare system, according to a study in the International Journal of Mental Health Systems. Mental health services are fragmented and the budget allocated to mental health services is small (0.4 percent of the total health budget). The study explored health providers’ views about mental health integration into primary care in Zambia. Surveys were conducted with 111 health service providers in primary care centres, in both rural and urban settings.

August 5, 2010 Public health perspectives on women's mental health (USA)

A new book published by Springer explores women’s mental health from a range of public health perspectives. Clinicians, researchers, academics and advocates explore issues related to current challenges in mental health: effective treatment and prevention, equal access, improved service delivery, and stronger public policy.

August 5, 2010 Experiences of diabetes for low-income Canadians

A recently published study from York University explores how living on a low income affects patients’ self-management of type 2 diabetes. The results are based on semi-structured interviews with 60 participants from four community health centres in a large Canadian city.

July 22, 2010 SAMHSA launches mental health awareness campaign for ethno-racial communities (USA)

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), in collaboration with the Ad Council, has launched a national public service advertising campaign to promote mental health recovery among American youth in ethno-racial communities. The campaign encourages young adults to open up about mental health issues and seeks to promote social change around the stigma surrounding mental illnesses. The campaign includes materials for Hispanic/Latino, American Indian or Native American, Chinese American and African American communities.

July 22, 2010 Diabetes medication adherence better among people with schizophrenia (USA)

People who have schizophrenia may be more likely to take their oral hypoglycemia medication than people who do not have schizophrenia, according to new research published in the Schizophrenia Bulletin. Researchers used health system data from the Department of Veterans Affairs to compare adherence to oral hypoglycemia medications for diabetes among 11,454 patients with schizophrenia and 10,560 patients with diabetes who did not have schizophrenia.