June 3, 2013

New AAMC, APA Collaboration Expands Mental Health Educational Resources

White House convenes leaders for National Conference on Mental Health

WASHINGTON — In response to a call from the Obama administration to further the national dialogue on mental health, the AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges) and the American Psychological Association (APA) today announced a collaboration to expand a free, online collection of mental health educational resources to equip health care professionals and medical students with the knowledge they need to improve mental health screenings and early identification of mental health concerns. This announcement was made the same day both organizations joined President Obama and Vice President Biden — along with mental health advocates, health care providers, faith leaders, government officials, educators and individuals who have experienced mental health problems — for the National Conference on Mental Health that convened at the White House. The conference can be viewed live from 9:40 a.m. to approximately 2:45 p.m. (EDT) at whitehouse.gov/live.

Together, the AAMC and APA are calling for resources and tools to help educate current health care providers and individuals teaching tomorrow’s doctors and other health professionals about the importance of delivering mental health care as part of comprehensive health care. The materials will be available as part of the mental health section of the AAMC’s MedEdPORTAL®  iCollaborative, a publicly available and free online resource. 

“We must focus on reducing the stigma of mental disorders, identifying early warning signs, and beginning prompt treatment. As we train the next generation of physicians to conduct mental health screenings and refer patients to trained providers for treatment — as part of routine health care delivery — expanding access to the necessary resources and educational tools will be a critical component,” said Darrell G. Kirch, MD, AAMC president and CEO. “We are honored to join the president and vice president in today’s important discussion, and will continue this work with our colleagues at the American Psychological Association and other leaders in the mental health community.”

“We are very pleased to be partnering with the Association of American Medical Colleges on this project,” said Norman B. Anderson, PhD, CEO of the American Psychological Association. “Education about mental health issues to reduce the stigma that results in barriers to care is essential for all health professionals. The expanded iCollaborative collection takes advantage of the psychology community’s vast scholarship in this area, as well as the latest digital technology. I expect it to be a key resource for medical educators, students and health care professionals alike.”

The AAMC’s iCollaborative collection currently includes materials on mental health such as:

For more information on the mental health resources available through the iCollaborative, visit MedEdPORTAL website.

About the AAMC

The Association of American Medical Colleges is a not-for-profit association representing all 141 accredited U.S. and 17 accredited Canadian medical schools; nearly 400 major teaching hospitals and health systems, including 51 Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers; and nearly 90 academic and scientific societies. Through these institutions and organizations, the AAMC represents 128,000 faculty members, 75,000 medical students and 110,000 resident physicians. Additional information about the AAMC and U.S. medical schools and teaching hospitals is available on the AAMC website.

About the APA

The American Psychological Association, in Washington, DC, is the largest scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States. APA’s membership includes more than 134,000 researchers, educators, clinicians, consultants, and students. Through its divisions in 54 subfields of psychology and affiliations with 60 state, territorial and Canadian provincial associations, APA works to advance the creation, communication and application of psychological knowledge to benefit society and improve people's lives. For more information, visit the APA website.