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January 21, 2020 by Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care

Mad in America Continuing Education 2020 Webinar Course: Innovative Approaches with People Who are Suicidal

Despite national and local suicide prevention efforts, the suicide rate in the United States has steadily climbed over the past two decades. The same rise in suicide has been reported among veterans. As a society, we need to rethink our efforts to helping people who are suicidal.

Mad in America Continuing Education is hosting an 11-seminar course in 2020 that will promote that “rethinking” effort. The eleven presentations will focus on the following:

  • What are the social factors, such as unemployment and gun ownership, that are known to affect suicide rates?
  • Why haven’t suicide awareness programs lowered suicide rates? Do antidepressants reduce—or increase—the risk of suicide?
  • A public health effort in Oregon that has successfully reduced suicide rates.
  • Innovative therapeutic programs, including several developed by people with lived experience, that are proving to be effective in lowering the risk of suicide.
  • How to protect mental health providers from liability when working with people who are suicidal.

We anticipate receiving approval for a total of 11.0 CEs (1.0 CE credit for each webinar) for psychologists, social workers, nurses, licensed professional counselors, and marriage/family therapists.

View schedule & register

(Use coupon code  FEMHC for $50 off the regular course fee.)

All courses are presented live and also recorded, and thus are available at times convenient for those who are enrolled.

If you have any questions, please contact MIA Continuing Education Director Bob Nikkel at

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October 14, 2019 by Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care

Mental health is a care we must share

Wide social networks can help to shield people from mental disorder. A leading psychologist argues that we should celebrate this collective responsibility

The government published its first national review of children and young people’s mental wellbeing on 10 October, World Mental Health Day. The report found that four out of five children are happy with their lives. Or, more worryingly, that one in five are not.

But what lies behind these figures? Between 2012 and 2018, the number of children and young people referred for mental health treatment increased by about two-thirds. The number of university students reporting a mental health problem rose fivefold over the same period. How can we understand these dramatic increases? Has there been an actual rise in mental disorder?

In fact, reports of a rise in mental health problems are for the most part exaggerated: the prevalence of mental disorder in five- to 15-year-olds has increased, but only by 16% in the past 20 years, although the increase for emotional disorders for young women aged 16-24 is far higher.

The most likely explanation is that in recent years we have become better at expressing our thoughts, feelings, beliefs, wishes and desires and have passed this on to our children. Describing our mental states helps us, as a society, to collaborate, allows us to share our emotional experience and to build social support. This has tremendous benefits for mental health and wellbeing. People who are not able to collaborate are much more likely to express their difficulties through physical illness or anger.

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October 2, 2019 by Keele University News

“Emergency Poet” Opens Literary Pharmacy to Support Mental Wellbeing

Literature academics from Keele University are opening an innovative “Poetry Pharmacy” to dispense literary “first aid” as a way of bringing the therapeutic benefits of poetry to the local community and to support mental health.

“Emergency Poet” Deborah Alma, a Lecturer in Creative Writing at Keele, and senior lecturer and poet James Sheard have started the venture as a novel way of showcasing poetry, focusing on good mental health and well-being.

The “Poetry Pharmacy”, set in a Victorian shop in the high street of the Shropshire town of Bishop’s Castle, is holding a launch event on Thursday 3 October and will officially open to visitors on Friday 4 October.

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October 1, 2019 by Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care


During our Matching Gift Challenge

We have some wonderful news – for you and also for the Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care.  We have received confirmation that one of our friends and philanthropic partners has stepped forward with a $400,000 Matching Gift Challenge!

If you are able to make a gift between now and October 31st, your contribution will be matched – dollar for dollar – by the Open Society Foundations.  For the next 31 days you can double the impact of your support for connecting philanthropy with the world’s top researchers and programs to bring recovery-based care and supports to every community.

Help us quickly turn this $400,000 gift into $800,000 so that we may continue to make great strides and impact bringing hope to individuals and their families, giving psychiatrists, psychologists and clinicians better tools, giving people better outcomes, and addressing a wide range of society’s challenges, save a great deal of public money and prevent unnecessary human suffering.

Please don’t delay.












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September 28, 2019 by Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care

Excellence donor-advised fund director hits $1M goal for nutrition research

Scientific Advisory Council member and donor-advised fund director Dr. Bonnie Kaplan awarded $250,000 prize

In 2015, Dr. Bonnie Kaplan, Professor Emerita at U Calgary medical school, opened two donor-advised funds, one at the Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care and one at the Calgary Foundation in Canada, with an initial goal of raising a million dollars for research into the best use of micronutrients to treat and prevent mental and emotional distress. Four years later, she’s reached that goal with a $250,000 award accompanying the Dr. Rogers Prize for Excellence in Complementary and Alternative Medicine presented to her at a gala event on September 27, 2019.

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September 20, 2019 by Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care


During our 2019 Matching Gift Challenge

We have some wonderful news – for you and also for the Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care.  We have received confirmation that one of our friends and philanthropic partners has stepped forward with a $400,000 Matching Gift Challenge between today and Oct 31!












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September 13, 2019 by Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care

World Film Premiere – Beyond Possible: How the Hearing Voices Approach Transforms Lives

Learn more and support the Hearing Voices Research & Development Fund.

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August 30, 2019 by Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care

3rd Meeting of the International Open Dialogue Research Collaboration

Call for abstracts

There is an increasing amount of interest in Open Dialogue around the world. OD training programs currently are offered in the UK, USA, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Norway, Australia, Japan, etc. and a considerable amount of research being done in the wake of these training programs. The largest-ever RCT of Open Dialogue, the ODDESSI-trial (Open Dialogue: Development and Evaluation of a Social Network Intervention for Severe Mental Illness), is in its second year.

This year (2019), the Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care has funded the HOPEnDialogue research project. The purpose of the project is to promote and assess the fidelity of Open Dialogue practice and evaluate its effectiveness internationally and is inspired by and linked to the ODDESSI trial. HOPEnDialogue is coordinated by the Italian National Research Council and involve an international Advisory Board of twenty OD experts.

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August 1, 2019 by Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care

Beyond Well: Science podcast Ep.2- A psychiatrist’s road to Open Dialogue

We are all on a spectrum of mental health and everyone will struggle at some point in their life. Let’s build a toolbox for living better. Beyond Well: Science With Sheila Hamilton is here to explore our understanding of mental health challenges and what we’re learning about ways help ourselves and others to navigate and grow through them.

In this episode, Sheila talks with psychiatrist and the Foundation’s Vice Chair Chris Gordon about his path to Open Dialogue practice and how he has integrated the approach into his community mental health program and into his teaching at Harvard Medical School, MacLean and Mass General.

If you enjoy this podcast, become a sustaining partner today with an easy monthly donation.



Corporate sponsors are welcome and donors of $75,000 or more will receive special invitations to meet Sheila’s celebrity guests in studio as well as dinner with Sheila and Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care CEO, Gina Nikkel, PhD.

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June 28, 2019 by Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care

Holistic Options for ADHD Treatment

‘Micronutrients for ADHD Youth’ Study Now Enrolling Participants

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is the presence of the behaviors of hyperactivity, impulsivity, and poor attention. The root causes and best solutions for these troubling behaviors will vary from child to child.

Parents concerned about the safety and effectiveness of popular drug treatments can try some promising alternatives with a significantly lower risk of unwanted side effects. Many have found psychotherapy and parent training highly effective in resolving troubling behavior and improving their child’s social skills and relationships with peers.

For some, micronutrient supplements have been life-changing:

The Micronutrients for ADHD Youth study is now accepting new participants, with sites at Oregon Health & Science University, The Ohio State University in Columbus, and University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada. Eligible children are age 6-12 and have not been on ADHD medications for two weeks before their participation begins.

Contact lead researcher, Jeanette Johnstone, PhD, at  503-494-3700 or if you are within driving distance of Portland, Oregon.

If you are near Columbus, OH, contact E. Arnold, MD at

If you are near Lethbridge, Alberta, contact B. Leung, PhD at

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