Norway held psychological support conference in Bangkok

The Government of Norway, in collaboration with the Norwegian Center for Crisis Psychology, has organised “Promoting Psychosocial Support and Psychological Recovery in Emergencies in Asia” conference in Bangkok on Feb 4-5.

The 2-day session gathered approximately 70 government officials and mental health care professionals from over 10 countries in Asia.

Mr. Erik Svedahl, Deputy Head of Mission at the Norwegian Embassy in Thailand opened the conference. Dr. Ragnhild Dybdahl, Deputy Head of Mission at the Norwegian Embassy in Hanoi, convened the sessions with the key note speakers.

Dr. Dybdahl highlighted the psychosocial impacts of emergencies on vulnerable populations, and the pressing need to address this issue “Mental health needs to be a public health priority but how we ensure that the priority is materialized,  remains a challenge” she says.

At the conference, the participants shared best practices on how to enhance vulnerable communities’ resilience following disasters or emergencies. Different psychosocial and psychological disaster interventions were analyzed, aiming to improve mental health support in post-disaster and crises situations. They discussed the many challenges organizations face in managing mental health and psychosocial care, and emphasized the need to have a uniform and coordinated response.

“We hope, by bringing experts and officials together in the field of mental health, that we can better understand how to improve support for disaster victims in Asia,” said, Executive Director of Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC), Dr. Krasae Chanawongse, at the conference.

Source: The Embassy of Norway