Addis Ababa University

Addis Ababa University

Addis Ababa University (Department of Psychiatry)
PO 9086
Addis Ababa
Ethiopia
www.aau.edu.et

Lead Investigators

Prof Atalay Alem
+251 112 139744
+251 115 511079
Contact

Dr Charlotte Hanlon

Dr Charlotte Hanlon
+251 112 139744
+251 115 511079
Contact

Project Staff

Dr Abebaw Fekadu
Co-investigator

Prof Damen Hailemariam
Co-investigator, School of Public Health, AAU

Dr Teshome Shibre
Co-investigator

Dr Tedla Wolde-Giorgis
Advisor, Office of the Minister, Ministry of Health
Collaborator on Emerald

Dr Markos Tesfaye
Collaborator, Departement of Psychiatry,
CHS, Jimma University

Mr Mideksa Adugna
Collaborator, Ministry of Health

Mr Fentie Ambaw
PhD student, AAU

Mr Yohannes Hailemichael

Mr Yohannes Hailemichael
PhD student, AAU

Mr Sisay Abayneh
PhD student, AAU

Daniel Alemayehu Chekol

Mr Daniel Alemayehu Chekol
Research Assistant

Mrs Tigist Eshetu
Research Assistant

Mr Besufekad Sharew
Administrator

Institute Presentation

Addis Ababa University (AAU) is the oldest and most prestigious university in Ethiopia. The Department of Psychiatry, AAU, is engaged actively in research to improve mental health care in Ethiopia. Large-scale epidemiological surveys, prospective studies, qualitative work, clinical trials, and molecular genetics studies, amongst others, have been conducted in various population groups: urban, rural, women, pastoralists, islanders, children (community studies and child labourers), refugees and persons living with HIV/AIDS. By establishing the burden of mental disorders in the Ethiopian setting, (in terms of premature mortality, chronicity of symptoms, disability, undernutrition, stigma and caregiver burden), and the relevance to public health priorities (for example, maternal and child health, HIV transmission) and development (through association with poverty), mental health has now been accorded a high priority within the country. In terms of the number of Ethiopian publications in peer-reviewed journals between 1980 and 2008 in the field of biomedical science, mental health was ranked fourth. Mental health research output in Ethiopia is surpassed only by research into HIV/tuberculosis, nutrition and malaria.

The department is strongly linked with Ethiopia’s Federal Ministry of Health, and is participating in supporting implementation of the new Ethiopian Mental Health Strategy. Through the DFID-funded Programme for Improving Mental health CarE (PRIME) project (http://www.prime.uct.ac.za), we are looking at how integration of mental health care into primary care settings can be achieved in a sustainable, equitable, affordable and acceptable manner. The PRIME project is looking at implementation at the level of the district (approximately 100,000 to 150,000 population). Emerald will complement findings from PRIME in Ethiopia by providing vital evidence on mental health system strengthening to support delivery of care.

The team from AAU has extensive experience working on capacity-building efforts in mental health training and research in Ethiopia through a nineteen year link with Umeĺ University (resulting in 8 Ethiopians obtaining PhDs in mental health epidemiology), a nine year link with University of Toronto, a six year capacity-building project with King’s College London (KCL) and a three year project with the British Council-funded DelPHE project (held with University of Toronto and KCL). The Department of Psychiatry (AAU) started a new PhD programme in mental health epidemiology in 2011, supported by the Centre for Global Mental Health (KCL).

Atalay Alem is one of the pioneers of mental health research, service development and capacity-building within Ethiopia and brings a wealth of expertise to the Ethiopia team.

Charlotte Hanlon is a psychiatric epidemiologist working in the Department of Psychiatry, AAU. She has experience in research, training, capacity-building and providing technical assistance for policy-makers.

Abebaw Fekadu is an experienced psychiatric epidemiologist working in the Department of Psychiatry, AAU. He is PI of the DfID-funded PRIME project within Ethiopia and is a member of the Ministry of Health’s taskforce to implement the WHO’s mhGAP in Ethiopia.

Teshome Shibre is a psychiatric epidemiologist with expertise in stigma, caregiver burden of severe mental illness, conducting large-scale epidemiological studies and clinical trials.

Damen Haile-Mariam is Professor of Health Economics at School of Public Health.

Tedla Wolde-Giorgis is Mental Health Advisor to the Ethiopian Federal Ministry of Health and brings substantial policy and planning experience to the Ethiopia team.

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