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Working Group on Comorbidity of Mental and Physical Health

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The WPA Working Group (WG) on Managing Comorbidity of Mental and Physical Health has been tasked with the following:

  1. To identify topics related to comorbidity of mental and physical disorders and develop recommendations for WPA’s involvement in research, education and service development relevant to dealing with problems related comorbidities of this type

  2. To identify individuals and centres interested and willing to participate in WPA’s program of research and education related to the comorbidity of mental and physical disorders

  3. To liaise with other WPA Action Plan Working Groups with a view to ensure that problems of comorbidity are considered in the work of these groups

  4. To propose the organization of symposia, workshops and other types of meetings

  5. To prepare reviews of evidence and drafts of position papers

  6. To create training programs


Working Group Leadership Team

Chair - Prof. Norman Sartorius

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MD, PhD, FRCPsych

President, Association for the Improvement of Mental Health Programmes (AMH)


Giovanni De Girolamo

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Medical Doctor, Specialist in Psychiatry and Director of the Unit of Epidemiological and Evaluative Psychiatry at the IRCCS Fatebenefratelli in Brescia

Read Professor De Girolamo's biography here.

Ivona Filipcic Simunovc

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Andrea Fiorillo

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Professor of Psychiatry,

Department of Psychiatry,

University of Campania “L. Vanvitelli”, Naples, Italy


Oye Gureje

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Department of Psychiatry

University of Ibadan


Jair Mari

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Jair Mari, Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Psychological Medicine, Escola Paulista de Medicina, Universidade Federal de São Paulo

Vikram Patel

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The Pershing Square Professor of Global Health and Welcome Trust Principal Research Fellow

Department of Global Health and Social Medicine

Harvard Medical School

Andreas Reif

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Elena Starostina

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Professor of Endocrinology, Consultant Psychiatrist

Moscow Regional Research and Clinical Center

Working Group Members



  • Organise collaborative and inter-sectional symposia and workshops during the WPA World Congresses, as well as Thematic and Regional Meetings.

  • Develop a range of recorded lectures, live and recorded webinars, and resource documents

  • Support development of in-country capacity in low-resource settings through the facilitation of high impact activities and regional collaborations that leverage, share and disseminate relevant content

  • Prepare a report on “IDD: A Global Framework for Action” emphasizing global inter-sector service, training and medical education goals

  • Collaborate on articles in scientific journals as well as chapters in leading textbooks with specific reference to the dissemination of the evidence-based knowledge 

  • Partner with national and global institutions including the WHO, UNICEF, NIH, Welcome Trust, Grand Challenges in Mental Health, and International Initiate for Disability Leadership (IIDL), among others, to obtain funding in support of good clinical practice, research and training with relevance to low resource countries

  • Support government initiatives, plans, policies as they intersect with the WG ID remit

  • Develop joint initiatives with other Working Groups and Scientific Sections, in the salient areas of public mental health, child and adolescent & youth mental health, comorbidity, etc.

  • Provide a selection of evidence-based interventions appropriate for service delivery platforms in low-resource regions

  • Create a list of the training and resources required to implement selected requisite interventions.

News from our Working Groups

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