Professor Patel is also the co-Director of the Centre for the Control of Chronic Conditions at Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI).
Noted Goa-based psychiatrist and professor of international mental health, Dr. Vikram Patel, has made it to the Time magazine’s annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world.
Dr. Patel, co-founder of the Goa-based mental health research NGO, Sangath, and the Centre for Global Mental Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine where he is professor, featured in the Time’s category of ‘Pioneers’.
Professor Patel, a senior fellow at the UK-based Wellcome Trust, is also the co-Director of the Centre for the Control of Chronic Conditions at the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI).
He is especially noted for his path breaking epidemiological research unraveling the debilitating effects of mental disorders among peoples in low and middle income nations and proving a strong link between mental disorders and poverty.
In a short profile on him penned by American psychologist Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen in Time, Professor Patel was profusely lauded for his efforts in “addressing the unmet needs of resource-poor countries” and his life’s inspiring and profound credo of “mental health for all.”
Dr. Patel’s vision has been the provision of superior mental healthcare to low-resource communities, where his researches reveal that around 90 per cent of people affected by mental illnesses go untreated owing to the paucity of psychiatrists. Importantly, Professor Patel’s research has effectively demonstrated that evidence-based treatments for mental illnesses can be delivered in low-income countries by non-specialist healthcare workers.
“Being named on this list is a recognition for the tireless efforts of so many people around the world to use science and advocacy to enhance the quality of life of people affected by mental health problems, easily the most neglected of all global health issues, in the poorest communities of the world,” said a modest Dr. Patel, known for his vital contribution in laying the foundation of global mental health through his numerous research articles and textbooks.